What You Should Know About Long-Term Use Of Paracetamol

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Earlier this month I told you how the popular painkiller paracetamol (acetaminophen) lands 78,000 people in A&E every year and how it is the leading cause of liver failure in the US. I also told you that how, when used as a hangover treatment (even after drinking a small to moderate amount of alcohol), paracetamol increases the risk of kidney disease by a staggering 123 per cent.

Paracetamol – Not safe. By no measure

Families have turned to paracetamol as a risk-free pain relief ‘solution’ since the 1950s because it is considered safer than anti-inflammatory drugs, like ibuprofen, or opiates.

Yet, despite mounting evidence showing that it is not so ‘risk-free’, the UK’s Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) is adamant that there is insufficient evidence to establish a causal link between paracetamol and these adverse events. The agency claims that the balance of risks and benefits for paracetamol remains positive.

However, the MHRA might change their story after the results of a recent study were published in a major mainstream medical journal, sounding the alarm once again over the risks associated with paracetamol… It turns out that even when you follow the directions carefully, this drug can still be deadly.

This latest study focussed on the risk of using paracetamol within “standard dose ranges” but over longer periods of time, like what you might do to treat arthritis, for example.

We already know how destructive paracetamol can be to the liver. But this research found that it can damage your kidneys as well, and even cause internal bleeding.

The researchers also discovered paracetamol increases your risk of having a heart attack, stroke, and developing high blood pressure.

And as if all that wasn’t enough, using the drug at upper-dose levels can increase your chance of dying prematurely by as much as 60 per cent.

That’s right, a drug that is generally accepted to be safe for nursing mothers and babies, taken as directed for extended periods of time can raise your risk of an early death by 60 per cent.

Adding to that, even following the directions to the letter, taking that “innocent” little pill containing paracetamol can still destroy your liver, or kidneys, or heart… or kill you.

The researchers said several times in the study that they believe the “true risk” this drug is much higher than doctors and nurses have been led to believe.

And while this new research sounded a warning to health professions about the “toxicity” of paracetamol, there were some things they didn’t mention. The study didn’t warn doctors that it can cause a life-threatening skin reaction, one that’s like a burn from the inside out, called Stevens- Johnson Syndrome. Or another reaction called TENs, described as peeling of the skin so horrific that looks like the person was put in a pot of boiling water.

And these reactions not only can occur the very first time you take the drug, but even if you’ve taken it many times before.

But not to worry! Medical authorities like the American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) promised to make sure we know all about the dangers associated with the estimated 600 other drugs containing paracetamol…

In fact, the FDA announced plans to issue complete safety guidelines and to decide how it’s going to “regulate” these medications to help keep us safe… back in 1977.

Now, 38 years later, we’re still waiting…


Bear in mind all the material in this email alert is provided for information purposes only. We are not addressing anyone’s personal situation. Please consult with your own physician before acting on any recommendations contained herein.


Sources:

“Long-term use of world’s most popular painkiller poses risk: study” March 3, 2015, The Daily News, nydailynews.com

“What you should know about long-term use of paracetamol” Dennis Thompson, March 4, 2015, Health, news.health.com

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