Tylenol and other OTC drugs containing Acetaminophen are of course the most popular pain relieving drugs available. They are used by millions of people with little side effects. But…there is a bad side to these drugs, particularly for infants and children.
Even if you ignore the facts about infants and children using Tylenol, there are still at least 150 adults in the U. S. each year who suffer fatal liver failure as a result of taking one of these drugs. In addition, there are thousands of non-fatal admissions to hospital for liver problems resulting from the use of acetaminophen.
No one really knows just how many people are living with health issues as a result of being inflicted with liver damage from this everyday medicine.
In actuality, there are more deaths resulting from overdosing with this class of OTC drug than all the other OTC drugs put together. For decades, various consumer groups have been pushing for a ‘black box’ warning label on Tylenol and other acetaminophen drugs, but unfortunately this has not happened. Its rather strange when you consider that in some cases, if a herbal remedy is suspected of causing liver damage – even on flimsy evidence, the regulators will act very fast and will virtually overnight either ban the herb or require a black box warning. The truth is, most natural substances rarely have the amount of problems that pharmaceutical drugs do.
As for Tylenol, one of the other important things about it, is that if you give this drug to young children, you must be particularly careful about the dose. This is because there are two versions of Tylenol for children. One is for infants up to two years old, and the other for children older than 2 years.
Now, this is what you have to watch and be careful about! The infant formula is much stronger than the children’s one which is opposite of what it should be! The reason? Well the manufacturers argue that you can then give an infant less so it makes it easier to administer, even though it is a liquid.
Because of the difference in strengths there are too many cases of children dying through their parents innocently giving them the children’s dose of an infant’s formula. The difference between an effective dose and a lethal dose is actually quite small.
There is of course a place for pain killer drugs as there are with many others. But, they should be used as a last resort and for short periods only. Of course there are exceptions to this when someone is unlucky enough to have a serious health issue which cannot be resolved.
In some cases people take these drugs just for muscle pain resulting from vigorous exercise. Not, a good idea! Be cautious and conservative in your use of all forms of pain killer drugs. They do not solve the underlying cause of the pain but rather just mask it.
Consider the following informational facts taken from ProPublica.com (Journalism In The Public Interest) states that:
- About 150 Americans die a year by accidentally taking too much acetaminophen, the active ingredient in Tylenol, federal data from the CDC shows.
- Acetaminophen has a narrow safety margin: the dose that helps is close to the dose that can cause serious harm, according to the FDA.
- The FDA has long been aware of studies showing the risks of acetaminophen. So has the maker of Tylenol, McNeil Consumer Healthcare, a division of Johnson & Johnson.
- Over more than 30 years, the FDA has delayed or failed to adopt measures designed to reduce deaths and injuries from acetaminophen. The agency began a comprehensive review to set safety rules for acetaminophen in the 1970s, but still has not finished.
- McNeil, the maker of Tylenol, has taken steps to protect consumers. But for over more than three decades, the company has repeatedly opposed safety warnings, dosage restrictions and other measures meant to safeguard users of the drug.
This information is very disconcerting, especially since the traditional medical community would probably never admit to this.
You decide for yourself!