Kratom (mitragyna speciosa) is a fairly new drug, bringing a shining appeal to underground circles and individuals with access to lower-profile substances. But anything can gain popularity overnight, so Kratom isn’t a drug that should be taken lightly, especially when some claim that it can provide long-term benefits for people dealing with opioid withdrawal symptoms. 

As a leading provider of addiction therapy programs and other solutions for substance abuse, Steps to Recovery understands the ease at which these drugs can go from small to big. It’s especially important to keep individuals aware of the side effects of Kratom and any other substance, especially when they can cause damage to vital body parts. Let’s explore Kratom’s impact on kidneys and other body systems to help prevent life-threatening problems for those who encounter the drug.

What Is Kratom?

Kratom is a herb made from the leaves of a specific tree native to Southeast Asia. It is mostly found in leaf or powder forms, and while research on the drug is limited, signs have shown that it can become addictive if used often enough. Kratom can be used as a stimulant or a sedative, and word has spread that it’s a product that can treat opioid use disorder.

Kratom and Kidney Damage

As Kratom use rises, medical professionals are becoming more aware of its contribution to acute kidney failure. It’s believed that regular consumption of Kratom over an average period of 11 years presents suggestive signs of kidney failure. Typically, kidney failure associated with Kratom often occurs after the liver becomes compromised and unable to remove toxins from the body. 

Responsible levels of Kratom aren’t known to have a high risk of kidney failure, but kidney damage is much more likely for individuals abusing the substance regularly. Symptoms usually begin after about 1-8 weeks of severe use, often starting first in the liver. If you notice kidney failure signs or symptoms, stop your Kratom intake, and get help from a substance abuse treatment center or other medical professionals. 

Other Risks of Using Kratom

Kidney failure worsens without treatment, but it won’t be the only side effect endured. It’s important for individuals to prevent the risks and side effects of Kratom before they occur. With more awareness, people will be more capable of dealing with troubles and be more aware of the negative symptoms associated with the herb.

Loss of Appetite

Kratom abuse can eventually lead to the loss of appetite and desire to consume only Kratom. This appetite loss leads to highly restrictive calorie intake that negatively affects organs and others parts of the body that need nutrients to function properly.


Sometimes the body slows its bowel movements as a direct result of Kratom intake. This causes more painful, harder stools, leading to colon ruptures in worst-case scenarios.

Liver Damage

Kratom symptoms often start with the liver, with bright yellow urine being a key indicator that the liver cannot function as it should. The skin may also begin to yellow as the liver fails and the job is passed onto the overworked kidneys.

Bodily Responses

The body may become irritated or inflamed as a result of Kratom consumption. Parts of the face, like your cheeks, may become reddish-purple, and individuals also report feeling extremely itchy, sweaty, or irritated, often lasting for a few hours at a time.

How a Lack of Regulation Makes Kratom Dangerous

As we discussed, many believe Kratom products can be used to help combat opioid addiction, but there is little to no evidence that is the case. Because Kratom isn’t listed under the Controlled Substances Act, it’s not subject to regulation even though the FDA has not approved its use. This contributes mightily to its spread and the belief that its a wholly positive substance.

While some locations have passed legislation criminalizing Kratom possession, others have neglected to take action and have Kratom legally sold to consumers. The FDA has issued warnings against using Kratom, citing many of the side effects we discussed above, and there’s reason to believe that Kratom will eventually fall under the microscope for its dangerous side effects. 

Treat Kratom Symptoms and Effects With Steps to Recovery

While Kratom addictions are rare, it doesn’t mean it’s impossible, nor does it make the symptoms and negative effects on your kidney or liver any less dangerous. Kratom shouldn’t be taken lightly, and if you find yourself relying on this drug and falling into potentially hazardous habits, your local partial hospitalization program can be a lifesaver. 

With Steps to Recovery, individuals in and around Levittown, PA, can receive the treatment needed to combat Kratom’s side effects and dangers and find healthier solutions to life’s stressors. Contact Steps to Recovery today at 267.209.7312 if you or a loved one are battling Kratom or any other substances.