Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are widely used for the treatment of pain and inflammation. Nonselective NSAIDs inhibit both cyclooxygenase (COX)-1 and COX-2. Nephrotoxicity of nonselective NSAIDs has been well documented. The effects of selective COX-2 inhibitors on renal function and blood pressure are attracting increasing attention. In the kidney, COX-2 is constitutively expressed and is highly regulated in response to alterations in intravascular volume. COX-2 metabolites have been implicated in the mediation of renin release, regulation of sodium excretion, and maintenance of renal blood flow. Similar to nonselective NSAIDs, inhibition of COX-2 may cause edema and modest elevations in blood pressure in a minority of subjects. COX-2 inhibitors may also exacerbate preexisting hypertension or interfere with other antihypertensive drugs. Occasional acute renal failure has also been reported. Caution should be taken when COX-2 inhibitors are prescribed, especially in high-risk patients (including elderly patients and patients with volume depletion).