acetaminophen


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Related to acetaminophen: aspirin

acetaminophen

(əsēt'əmĭn`əfĭn), an analgesicanalgesic
, any of a diverse group of drugs used to relieve pain. Analgesic drugs include the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as the salicylates, acetaminophen, narcotic drugs such as morphine, and synthetic drugs with morphinelike action such as meperidine
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 and fever-reducing medicine. It is an active ingredient in many over-the-counter medicines, including Tylenol and Midol. Introduced in the early 1900s, acetaminophen is a coal tar derivative that acts by interfering with the synthesis of prostaglandinsprostaglandin
, any of a group of about a dozen compounds synthesized from fatty acids in mammals as well as in lower animals. Prostaglandins are highly potent substances that are not stored but are produced as needed by cell membranes in virtually every body tissue.
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 and other substances necessary for the transmission of pain impulses. Although its action is similar to that of aspirinaspirin,
acetyl derivative of salicylic acid (see salicylate) that is used to lower fever, relieve pain, reduce inflammation, and thin the blood. Common conditions treated with aspirin include headache, muscle and joint pain, and the inflammation caused by rheumatic fever and
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, it lacks aspirin's anti-inflammatory and blood-thinning effects, is less irritating to the stomach, and can be used by people who are allergic to aspirin. Heavy use, however, has been linked to an increased incidence of liver failure, especially in heavy drinkers of alcoholic beverages and in those who are not eating enough, and overdose, especially in children, can be fatal.

acetaminophen

[ə‚sēd·ə′mēn·ə·fən]
(organic chemistry)
C8H9O2N Large monoclinic prisms with a melting point of 169-170°C; soluble in organic solvents such as methanol and ethanol; used in the manufacture of azo dyes and photographic chemicals, and as an analgesic and antipyretic.
References in periodicals archive ?
The effect of the acetaminophen concentration on the decomposition of this compound with compact fluorescent lamp radiation was studied as follows: solutions of acetaminophen with various concentrations were prepared, and these solutions at the previous optimum conditions (5 mL volume, 10 cm distance and 120 minutes exposure time) were exposed to the radiation.
Food and Drug Administration has set a maximum daily dose of 4,000 milligrams of acetaminophen in a 24-hour period.
The mothers had participated in three interviews about acetaminophen use during pregnancy: at the 12th and 30th weeks of gestation, and 6 months after giving birth (28,254 women who had missed at least one of these interviews and their children were excluded).
articleid=1833486) JAMA Pediatrics , acetaminophen use in pregnancy was associated with 13 to 37 percent increased risk of ADHD or hyperkinetic disorder (a severe type of ADHD) in children.
And OTC drugmakers have wildly different notions of what people can take: Some labels advise taking no more than 1,000 milligrams of acetaminophen daily; others set the limit almost four times as high.
do not apply to over-the-counter products that contain acetaminophen as the sole active ingredient or that are combined with other drugs, such as cough and cold medications.
Acetaminophen (paracetamol) is one the most commonly used over the counter (OTC) medications for pain and fever, and since product marketing commenced in the 1950's, its use as a safe OTC drug during pregnancy has continuously increased.
A randomized, placebo-controlled, double-dummy study in 1,643 patients presenting with acute low back pain found the median time to recovery was 17 days, both in patients assigned to 665 mg acetaminophen three times daily and in those told to take acetaminophen as required, and was 16 days in the placebo group.
People who drink even small amounts of alcohol while taking the drug acetaminophen are at risk for kidney damage, according to the results of a recent study.
In the study, 33 men and women with cardiovascular disease (typical candidates for the drug over an NSAID) took a standard daily dose of 1,000 mg of acetaminophen or an identical placebo for two weeks.
Besides relieving physical pain, acetaminophen, the active ingredient in Tylenol, may reduce existential pain.
Recently, three published reports linked acetaminophen (Tylenol) to severe rashes and blistering.