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Urinary Complications Following Bunamiodyl

James A. Gunn, M.D.
JAMA. 1961;175(10):911-912. doi:10.1001/jama.1961.63040100026020d.
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Many reports have appeared in the literature recently evaluating bunamiodyl (Orabilex) for use in cholecystography.1-7 These have stressed the good degree of opacification, frequency of duct visualization, decrease in opacified intestinal residue, and decrease in side effects, especially diarrhea and dysuria, when compared to other cholecystographic agents, particularly iopanoic acid (Telepaque).

Approximately 593 patients have received bunamiodyl at Blodgett Memorial Hospital with findings as noted above, except for the side effects concerning the urinary tract. Six of these patients developed signs and symptoms of renal dysfunction varying from slight dysuria with elevated blood urea nitrogen levels to oliguria and death. While multiple factors may be implicated in the failure of a complex situation such as renal function, the common ingestion of bunamiodyl makes review of these cases pertinent.

Bunamiodyl is a sodium salt of a tri-iodinated organic compound which contains 57% iodine by weight. It is ordinarily given in


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