Methadone use in patients with chronic renal disease

Drug Alcohol Depend. 1980 Mar;5(3):197-205. doi: 10.1016/0376-8716(80)90180-5.


Methadone disposition was studied in three patients receiving chronic methadone treatment and having chronic renal disease: one oliguric patient during peritoneal dialysis, one anuric patient on hemodialysis, and one patient following renal transplantation. In all three patients plasma levels of methadone remained within the desired therapeutic range (0.09--0.68 microgram/ml) for the doses received (40-50 mg/day). Elimination of methadone and its metabolites was almost exclusively by the fecal route in the anuric patient. Less than 1% of the daily dose was removed by peritoneal dialysis or hemodialysis. There was no laboratory or clinical evidence for accumulation of either methadone or its metabolites, suggesting that methadone is an appropriate narcotic to use in patients with renal disease.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Heroin Dependence / rehabilitation*
  • Humans
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic* / therapy
  • Kidney Transplantation
  • Male
  • Methadone / adverse effects
  • Methadone / blood
  • Methadone / therapeutic use*
  • Peritoneal Dialysis
  • Renal Dialysis


  • Methadone