Cisplatin-induced renal toxicity: possible reversal by N-acetylcysteine treatment

J Am Soc Nephrol. 1997 Oct;8(10):1640-4. doi: 10.1681/ASN.V8101640.


Cisplatin administration is frequently associated with renal insufficiency and tubular dysfunction. In this article, a case of massive cisplatin overdose as a result of an accidental substitution for carboplatin is reported. The patient developed oliguric renal failure, hepatotoxicity, ototoxicity, peripheral neuropathy, blindness, and severe myelosuppression. A therapeutic trial with N-acetylcysteine to reverse renal toxicity was attempted. This article reviews the literature on cisplatin nephrotoxicity, with an emphasis on possible mechanisms involved, and suggests therapy for its modification.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acetylcysteine / therapeutic use*
  • Acute Kidney Injury / chemically induced
  • Acute Kidney Injury / drug therapy
  • Acute Kidney Injury / physiopathology
  • Adult
  • Antineoplastic Agents / administration & dosage
  • Antineoplastic Agents / toxicity*
  • Cisplatin / administration & dosage
  • Cisplatin / toxicity*
  • Drug Overdose
  • Female
  • Free Radical Scavengers / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Kidney / drug effects*
  • Kidney / physiopathology
  • Medication Errors
  • Time Factors


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Free Radical Scavengers
  • Cisplatin
  • Acetylcysteine