In Defense of Acetaminophen

September 1, 2009

I consider the FDA’s recent advisory committee recommendations to restrict acetaminophen products inappropriate.

I consider the FDA’s recent advisory committee recommendations to restrict acetaminophen products inappropriate. It’s as though this well-studied analgesic, used safely and effectively for decades, suddenly is found to have new and previously unknown problems. Current labeling regarding the limits of its intended use are rather straightforward and may be elaborated further if considered necessary. Furthermore, prescribers of combination products are altogether capable, I believe, of considering the acetaminophen component when suggesting dosages to their patients. Should it be necessary, more explicit warnings about the well-known dangers of misuse of this medication can be issued, as such advisories regarding other products are so very frequently. Particularly when compared to NSAIDs, which are so widely prescribed and used without apparent appreciation of their much more elaborate and lethal risk profiles, acetaminophen products are the preferred analgesic option in nearly every care instance, in my view.

- John Mosby, MD
     Hampton, Ga

 

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