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Doctors' Answers to "Frequently Asked Questions" - Acetaminophen

These comments are made for the purpose of discussion and should NOT be used as recommendations for or against therapies or other treatments. An individual patient is always advised to consult their own physician.

Related Info: Aspirin, Aleve

Acetaminophen Maximun Dosage [posted 11/3/98]
Question: What is the toxic dosage of the acetaminophen? How many tablets are safe to take? What is the Lethal dosage? Also, If your tolerance increases, and you feel no effect from your current dose, Is it safe to increase or is the lethal dose the same regardless of your tolerance?

Answer: The daily limit of acetaminophen varies by weight and size. Some patients will experinece liver toxicity at lower doses than others. 10-15 gms can be hepatoxic and greater than 20 gm are potentially fatal. We usually don't recommend more than 3 gm a day. Higher sustained doses would require occasional liver function tests. Your tolerance to acetaminophen does not change. Your tolerance and ability to handle narcotics does. If you need more pain relief, increase the narcotics, not the acetaminophen.

Aspirin & Tylenol Dangers [posted 10/13/98]
Question: I have heard from different sources about Tylenol, are their any dangers of the drug causing kidney troubles. would like any info on the drug .

Answer: Any analgesia-aspirin, acetaminophen, nsaids will cause decreased renal function if taken long term. This usually means 6 or more a day for at least 10 years. Smaller doses for shorter times may have an effect;but, too difficult to measure currently.

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