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Paracetamol / Acetaminophen

Molecule Description

Paracetamol is a well-known pain killer. It is used to treat pain and fever, typically used for mild to moderate pain. It is often sold in combination with other medications in cold, fever, stomach ache, etc.
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Uses of Paracetamol / Acetaminophen

  • Fever
  • Pain
  • Lower back pain
  • Headache
  • Toothache
  • Migraine
  • Feverishness, feverish cold

Contraindications of Paracetamol / Acetaminophen

When should one not use Paracetamol / Acetaminophen

  • You are allergic to Paracetamol
  • You are suffering from liver or kidney disease
  • You are already taking other products containing Paracetamol

Side effects of Paracetamol / Acetaminophen

Common side effects of this drug are:

  • Liver damage
  • Skin reactions
  • Asthma exacerbation
  • Low count of white blood cells in blood
  • Low number of platelet
  • Stomach bleeding

Precautions and Warnings of Paracetamol / Acetaminophen


Can I take Paracetamol / Acetaminophen during pregnancy?
Paracetamol can be taken in pregnancy. But consult your doctor before taking Paracetamol to decide the appropriate dose and duration.

Breast Feeding

Can I take Paracetamol / Acetaminophen while breastfeeding?
Only a small amount of Paracetamol gets into breastmilk. It can be used during breastfeeding.


Can I drive if I have consumed Paracetamol / Acetaminophen?
Taking Paracetamol in recommended doses is not known to interfere with the ability to drive.


Can I consume alcohol with Paracetamol / Acetaminophen?
Caution is advised in chronic alcoholics or excessive consumption of alcohol as Paracetamol may cause liver damage.

Other General Warnings

Talk to your doctor if
  • Your past medical history, especially of liver disease
  • Regular intake of alcohol

Mode of Action of Paracetamol / Acetaminophen

How Does It Work?

There are some chemicals in the body called prostaglandins; these substances are released in response to illness or pain. Paracetamol blocks the production of these prostaglandins, making the body less aware of fever or pain. Paracetamol acts on the area of the brain which is responsible for controlling temperature. Thus, it controls the heat.
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Interactions of Paracetamol / Acetaminophen

Interactions with other medicines

  • Amobarbital
  • Pentabarbital
  • Phenobarbital
  • Carbamazepine

Dosage of Paracetamol / Acetaminophen


Taking Paracetamol in more doses may result in liver damage. Symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, loss of appetite, diarrhea, sweating, etc. More serious complications can be profuse sweating, irritability, convulsions, coma, bleeding, low blood sugar. Paracetamol overdose poisoning is the most ordinary overdose poisoning in the world, mostly because people assume it to be a very safe medicine.
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Missed a Dose

If you remember you missed a dose under 2 hours before you are due to take the next dose, take the missed dose, and wait for 4 hours until you take your next dose. If it is almost time for the next dose then skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule.
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Content Details


Dr. Ritu Budania

MBBS, MD (Pharmacology)

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


Q: Should I be cautious while taking Paracetamol?

  • Patients with liver problems
  • Patients with kidney problems
  • Patients with alcohol dependence
  • Patients with bleeding disorders
Last Updated on: 06 Oct 2020 | 05:46 PM (IST)

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