The Many Uses of Furosemide

Furosemide, a loop diuretic, is the first line of treatment for edema caused by congestive heart failure. Furosemides uses also includes treating cirrhosis, renal impairment, and nephrotic syndrome. It also prevents exercise–induced pulmonary hemorrhage in Thoroughbred and Standard -bred racehorses. Though it’s on the World Health Organization’s List of Essential Medicines, Furosemide is also on the World Anti-Doping Agency’s banned drug list as it’s allegedly used to mask other performance enhancing drugs. The branded Lasix is much more expensive than the generic Furosemide.

Furosemide is said to be ototoxic or toxic to the ear (oto-) that is, damaging to the cochlea or auditory nerve. On the other hand, researchers at the University of Western Australia’s Auditory Laboratory explored the effectiveness of treating tinnitus in animals using furosemide. Tinnitus is the condition of hearing a noise, typically a ringing noise, when no external sound is present. It is caused by the spontaneous firing of auditory nerve cells- hyperactivity in the brain observed after hearing loss.

Research shows that using furosemide a single time or repetitively reduced hyperactivity in the auditory nerve and midbrain, hindering the release neurotransmitters from the ear’s inner hair cells to the auditory nerves. though this window of treatment is narrow with furosemide being therapeutically effective in the first six weeks after hearing loss, when auditory neurons seem hyper-excitable. Another trial to test the effect of furosemide in human patients with tinnitus, will take place in collaboration with the UWA’s Ear Sciences Centre.

Furosemide’s diuretic effects are also used to prevent horses bleeding (exercise-induced pulmonary hemorrhage) during a race, congestive heart failure (in combination with other drugs), and allergic reactions. Furosemide’s ability to prevent or reduce, bleeding by horses during races was discovered accidentally during the 1970s.

Generic Furosemide tablets are available for less than half the cost of the branded ones on Many Americans fighting illnesses with little or no insurance find that buying generic prescription and OTC drugs at helps them adhere to their treatment schedules for longer.


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