Acetaminophen is a pain reliever and a fever reducer medication. It is used to treat mild to severe pain in conjunction with opiates or to reduce fever. Acetaminophen reduces pain and fever quickly caused by a headache, osteoarthritis, muscle ache, backache, toothache, cold and fever. It may also be used for the purposes as determined by the physician. This drug belongs to the analgesic (pain reliever) and antipyretics (forever reducer) group of drugs. Unlike other ASA or acetylsalicylic acid, this drug inhibits the synthesis of prostaglandins that transmit pain signals to the brain. It only blocks the signaling of pain but it does not have an anti-inflammatory action. Acetaminophen is available over-the-counter and as a prescription drug in various dosages.
How To Use Acetaminophen?
Use this medication as directed on the label or as prescribed by your physician. The recommended doses are as follow:
- For an adult and teenagers weighing at least 100 pounds should not exceed more than 1000 mg at a time or more than 4000 mg in a day.
- Children below 12 years of age should not take more than 5 doses in 24 hours. Use Acetaminophen exactly as directed. Do not take more than what is prescribed or written on the label.
- For children less than 2 years of age, use the pediatric dose with the special dose-measuring dropper. Follow the dosing instructions carefully.
- There is also Acetaminophen available for an infant which comes with its own oral syringe or medicine dropper.
For liquid suspension, shake the bottle first before using. For chewable tablets, chew the tablet first before swallowing.
What are the side effects of Acetaminophen?
Common side effects are:
- Stomach pain
- Dark urine
Serious side effects are:
- Liver damage with signs like jaundice, loss of appetite, unusual bleeding and bruising and clay-colored stools
- Severe dizziness
- Allergic reaction
- Trouble breathing
- Itching, swelling
Seek medical attention right away if you will experience any of the serious side effects listed.
- Stop using the medication if
- You still have pain after 7 days of treatment for an adult or 5 days of treatment for a child
- You have skin rashes, on-going headache
- You still have a fever after 3 days of use
- Use this product with caution in patients with G6PD and chronic malnutrition
- Do not take this drug if you are allergic to its active ingredient