The recent withdrawal of phenacetin from the pharmaceutical market in the FRG has stimulated the discussion of the extent of analgesic abuse and analgesic nephropathy (AN). Data from wholesale statistics, given here, revealed in the FRG population a high yearly per-capita consumption of analgesics (18.2 g), mostly used in mixed compounds. According to standardized data, the FRG ranks first among the north European countries. We suggest that the prevalence data given from the EDTA-registry (4.6% of the endstage renal population) underestimates the real extent of AN. AN in the FRG shows a north-to-south decline and is most prevalent in northern areas and West Berlin. It is assumed that the analgesic dilemma in the FRG is identical to the dilemma in Switzerland and Belgium.