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Paracetamol: Uses, Side Effects, Composition, Price & Dosages

Paracetamol is a generic name and is used as an ingredient in a certain group of medicines intended to work as a painkiller, anti-inflammatory drugs. The drug lies in the category of Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID). Paracetamol is manufactured in powdered form by Farmsons. Later, the brand name is formulated on the basis of combination and the company that is manufacturing the specific drug. Some of the drugs which contain paracetamol as one of its ingredients are Panadol, Calpol and Tylenol. Paracetamol assists in inhibiting chemicals which are responsible for pain. Also, the drug carries antipyretic property and hence prescribed or combined in the medicine which is used to reduce fever.

Paracetamol

The Paracetamol is prescribed for different kind of pains such as toothache, joint pain, cancer pain, and post-surgery pain. Other than that, the medicine is recommended for fever and inflammatory conditions such as edema. The drug can be taken as over-the-counter medicine, however, in severe cases or in case of allergic reactions a doctor should be consulted and the condition should be discussed before consuming paracetamol or medicine which contains paracetamol as its ingredient. As in case of certain diseases, it can worsen the condition.

Paracetamol Price in India:

  • Paracetamol Tablets : Rs.10 per pack of 10 tablets of 650 mg
  • Paracetamol Syrup : Rs.28.4/pack of 60ml of 125 mg
  • Paracetamol Infusion : Rs.45/piece of 99 ml of 150mg
  • Paracetamol Suppository : Rs.33.75/ pack of 5 units of 170 mg

Read More: Buscogast Price | Cepodem Price

Composition and Nature of Paracetamol:

The main ingredient of paracetamol is Acetaminophen. It carries antipyretic and analgesic property. The ingredient works by blocking the way of Nitric oxide (NO) and intervenes with various neurotransmitter receptors. This leads to the elevation of the pain threshold in the body. The antipyretic effect is caused when the synthesis of prostaglandin is blocked and the chemical interferes with the heat-regulating center which is located in the anterior hypothalamus. The amount of Acetaminophen depends on the drugs it is combined with.

Uses & Benefits of Paracetamol:

Paracetamol has several properties which include antipyretic property, analgesic property, anti-inflammatory property, and anti-coagulant property. The drug is combined with other drugs, as mentioned earlier for the desired effect. Here is a list of conditions for which the medicine is prescribed:

  • Allergy
  • Cough
  • Fever
  • Menstrual cramp
  • Abdominal pain
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Headache
  • Influenza
  • Cold
  • Spondylitis
  • Pain in the ear
  • Rheumatoid arthritis

Note: Above mentioned list of usage of Paracetamol is just an extract of the conditions for which the drug is prescribed frequently. There may be other conditions where the drug can be used. Always, consult a doctor before using it for other purpose.

Side effects of Paracetamol:

Apart from the intended effect, the Paracetamol might show some unexpected and undesired effects; which entirely depend on the health condition of the user, and do not occur usually. The side effects of Paracetamol can vary from one person. Some of the most common Paracetamol side effects that have complaint been by the user are listed below:

  • Allergic reactions like hives and redness of the skin
  • Rash
  • Swellings (face, throat, tongue, etc.)
  • Trouble breathing
  • Severe dizziness
  • Acute liver failure
  • Decreased platelets
  • Low blood pressure
  • Decreased white blood cells count

The list mentioned above does not contain all the possible side effects; there may be other side effects. The side effects of Paracetamol may not be very serious; however; in case these side effects do not subside by themselves, a medical professional should be consulted.

Dosage of Paracetamol:

  • Paracetamol should be consumed as per the instruction given by a healthcare professional or as per the direction mentioned in the leaflet which comes along with the package.
  • The Paracetamol dosage prescribed depends on several factors such as age, weight, severity of the condition, etc.
  • In case of certain impairment of organs or course of ongoing medications, the conditions should be discussed with a health care professional before consuming the medicine.
  • Adults can consume 500 mg tablets in every 4-6 hours but total dose should not exceed 4000 mg within 24 hours.
  • Children below 16 years should consume lower dose depending on their age. A pharmacist should be consulted for advice.
  • In the case of a missed dose, the Paracetamol medicine should be taken as soon as you remember it. Skip the missed dose, if it is time for the next dose. Do not overdose the medicine.
  • In case of overdose of Paracetamol, a medical professional should be consulted without delay.

How does Paracetamol work?

Paracetamol belongs to the category of antipyretic i.e. temperature reducer and analgesic i.e. painkiller. When the body experiences certain injury or illness, then a chemical is released called as prostaglandins in the body. Paracetamol inhibits the synthesis of this chemical, resulting in reliving from pain. Also, paracetamol increases the threshold of body temperature by targeting the part of the brain which regulates the temperature of the body. The Paracetamol is prescribed for relieving some symptoms such as fever, cold, flu, sprains and toothache. The Paracetamol medicine is available under different brand names.

Warnings and Precautions Related to Paracetamol:

  • Paracetamol is safe to be used by breastfeeding women; however a doctor should be consulted beforehand.
  • Pregnant women can consume it, but a health professional should be consulted beforehand.
  • The medicine should not be consumed by children below 2 years of age; however doses should be lower in the case of children below 16 years of age.
  • If you have any allergy in the past from paracetamol, then a health professional should be consulted for advice or check the leaflet that comes with the package. Also, check for other medicine which contains paracetamol as an ingredient.
  • Always take medical advice if you have any liver diseases or any kind of kidney impairment.
  • Consumption of alcohol should be avoided while consuming Paracetamol.
  • Consult a healthcare professional if you are underweight.
  • Check for interactions if you are on certain medication course.
  • Paracetamol starts working within an hour of consumption and the effect remain lasts for several hours.
  • In case the symptoms are not being relieved, then do not overdose.
  • Paracetamol should be given with extreme caution to an individual who is suffering from chronic malnutrition.

Paracetamol Variants:

The medicine is available in several forms and is prescribed depending on the condition of the patient. Here is a list containing variants of Paracetamol:

  • Soluble tablets- These tablets dissolve in water
  • Suspension form- syrup form of Paracetamol usually prescribed to children
  • Suppositories- The capsule form of Paracetamol which is intended to be inserted in back passage (anus).
  • Intravenous form- Injection form which can be injected in vein directly. This is usually used in the hospital.

Substitutes for Paracetamol:

If Paracetamol is not available or there is any history of allergic reactions, then in that case any other medicine with the same properties can be taken. Any medicine with anti-inflammatory, analgesic, antipyretic property can be taken as an alternative to the Paracetamol can be taken depending on the condition. Here are some of the drugs which can be substituted for Paracetamol:

  • T98 100 MG Drops- Mankind Pharmaceuticals Ltd
  • Anamol 170 MG Suppository- Elder Pharmaceuticals Ltd
  • Paraglass 1000 MG Infusion- Abbott India Ltd
  • Biopyrin 250 MG Suspension- Biochem Pharmaceutical Inds
  • Aminol 100 MG Tablet- Group Pharmaceuticals Ltd
  • Calpol 250 MG Suspension- Glaxosmithkline Pharmaceuticals Ltd
  • Paracip 250 MG Suspension- Cipla Ltd
  • Pacimol 125 MG Suspension- Ipca Laboratories Pvt Ltd.
  • Tamolgan 1000 MG Infusion- Parenteral Drugs (India) Ltd
  • Fivago 100 MG Syrup- Cipla Ltd

A pharmacist or healthcare professional should be consulted before using any of the above-mentioned medicine as an alternative.

Paracetamol Interaction:

Combining paracetamol with other medicines or certain food items can result in undesired effect. Some conditions can also get worse due to interaction. Hence, a medical practitioner should be informed beforehand to avoid any complications.

Here is a list which is found to give adverse effects, hence should not be used along with Paracetamol.

Paracetamol Interactions with Other drugs:

Paracetamol, when consumed along with some drugs, might cancel out the intended effect or react and produce some undesired effects.

In order to avoid such situation, a doctor should be pre-informed about the drugs in use. Also, paracetamol is also used as an ingredient in some medicines. So, before taking a medicine read the ingredients and make sure that the drug interaction will not result.

Here is a list of drugs which might produce some unwanted effects:

  • Ketoconazole: The medicine is prescribed for fungal and yeast infections. It should not be combined with Paracetamol as it might produce some unwanted effects. Ask a doctor about dosage adjustment or a suitable substitute.
  • Carbamazepine: It is used in the treatment of epilepsy and certain kind of pain. Combining it with paracetamol can cause undesired effect. Hence, a doctor should be asked for a suitable substitute.
  • Warfarin: This medicine is prescribed to prevent blood clots. Consuming Warfarin along with Paracetamol can result in severe effects. If any such effects are experienced, then a doctor should be consulted without any delay. Ask for dose adjustment or some alternative of either of the paracetamol to avoid interaction.
  • Colestyramine: It is used to reduce itchiness which is caused by primary biliary cirrhosis. Biliary Cirrhosis is a type of liver disease. Ask a medical practitioner for dose adjustment or the alternative of Paracetamol, which provides the same effect.
  • Busulfan and Imatinib: It is used to treat certain kind of cancer and should not be combined with Paracetamol. Doing so can result in undesired effects. Any of the medicines should be replaced with an alternative or dosage should be adjusted.
  • Metoclopramide: This medicine is prescribed for vomiting and nausea. The medicine should not be combined along with Paracetamol to avoid any kind of side effects. Any undesired effects should be reported to a doctor without any delay. Metoclopramide should be replaced with an alternative or proper dose adjustment should be done.
  • Lixisenatide: It is used for the treatment of type-2 diabetes. Combining it along with Paracetamol can result in some unwanted effects. If any of the undesired effects are experienced, then a medical practitioner should be consulted as soon as possible. A doctor should be informed about either of the medicines at the time of prescribing a medicine.
  • Phenobarbital, phenytoin and primidone: They are prescribed to control the seizures. Consuming them along with Paracetamol might result in severe clinical conditions. If any of the condition is experienced, then a doctor should be consulted as soon as possible. A doctor should be aware of the on-going drugs and dose adjustment should be done, if required. An individual should ask for an alternative which fulfills the desired effect without any harm to the health.

Paracetamol Interaction with diseases:

A medical practitioner should be pre-informed about the clinical condition of an individual before prescribing paracetamol. Sometimes, consuming paracetamol in case of certain diseases might diversify the disease.

Here is a list of diseases Paracetamol should be avoided:

  • Liver diseases: An individual suffering with any kind of liver impairment or active liver diseases should not use Paracetamol. Even if it is being used then extreme caution should be practiced while consumption to avoid any risk of severe side effects. If any symptoms such as fever, rashes, nausea, dark urine, etc. are experienced, then a doctor should be consulted immediately. Based on clinical condition, proper dose adjustment should be done or an alternative should be consumed. A doctor should be consulted before doing so.
  • Kidney diseases: An individual suffering with any kind of kidney disease should inform the condition to a medical practitioner at the time of consultation. Paracetamol or any medicine with paracetamol as an ingredient should be avoided in case renal impairment to avoid any risk of the severe clinical condition. If any undesired effects are experienced then a doctor should be consulted without any delay. Also, Paracetamol should be replaced with a suitable substitute or appropriate dose adjustment should be done.

Paracetamol Interaction with alcohol:

An individual with chronic alcohol habit should use Paracetamol with extreme caution as combining both enhances the risk of serious liver injuries. To avoid any complications, the medicine should be consumed under the supervision of medical professional and liver functions should be monitored closely.

Consumption of alcohol in the course of Paracetamol might result in weakness, fatigue, gastrointestinal bleeding, dizziness, rashes, nausea, joint pain, fever, jaundice, etc. If any of the mentioned or any other undesired effect is experienced, then a doctor should be consulted without any delay.

Paracetamol Interactions with food:

Certain food may interact with Paracetamol and result into some kind of clinical reaction.

Fortunately, there are no such food items that should be avoided in case of Paracetamol.

Paracetamol Interaction with lab test:

Due to the presence of certain chemical in the body, the lab results are manipulated. In this case, the patient will remain deprived of the actual treatment. Hence, a pathologist should be informed before conducting a lab test.

5-HIAA Urine Test: Conducting this test after consuming Paracetamol might give a false-positive result. To avoid such a situation, a lab technician should be informed about the consumption of medicine before conducting the test.

The above-mentioned list does not contain an exhaustive list of drug interactions. A doctor should be consulted to know about all the possible drug interactions, for the drug being consumed.

FAQs:

1) Is there any chance of becoming addicted to Paracetamol?

Ans: No, there is no chance of becoming addictive to paracetamol.

2) Can ingredients of Paracetamol remain in the body and cause harm later?

Ans: When consumed according to the prescription, the ingredients are excreted from the body within 24 hours of consumption. According to reports by medical labs, the mid-point elimination half-life of paracetamol is 2.5 hours which is shorter than that of caffeine i.e. 5 hours. Hence, there is no concern of causing any harm later.

3) Can body become resistant to Paracetamol over time?

Ans: Usually, the drug is taken for pain and fever, and in that case there is very less chance body becoming resistant to Paracetamol.

In case the symptoms persist even after consuming the prescribed dosage, a medical professional should be consulted.

4) Can Paracetamol be used in case of menstrual cramps?

Ans: Yes, this medicine helps in relieving the pain due to menstrual cramps.

5) Is Paracetamol a prescription based medicine?

Ans: No, Paracetamol is an over the counter (OTC) medicine. However, a doctor should be consulted to avoid any kind of drug interaction.

6) How Paracetamol medicine should be consumed?

Ans: The medicine can be consumed with or without food. However, the dosage should be strictly based on instruction as it may vary for a person of different age groups.

7) Is it safe to drive or operate machinery after consuming Paracetamol?

Ans: There is no complaint of sleepiness or drowsiness after consumption of Paracetamol. Hence, it is safe to drive or operate machinery which requires concentration.

However, after effects may vary from one person to person. Thereby, if an individual experiences drowsiness or sleepiness then such activities should be avoided.

8) How much time does Paracetamol need to start its action?

Ans: The analgesic effect i.e. pain-relieving effect can be experienced within half an hour of administration. The antipyretic effect i.e. fever reduction effect can be experienced within 30 minutes of consumption.

9) Will the consumption of Paracetamol interfere with any other ongoing medication?

Ans: Paracetamol does not interact with many medicines. However, there are certain medicines which should not be consumed along with Paracetamol. Such medicines include antifungal medication, blood-thinning medicine, a medicine containing ethanol, etc.

In case of any other ongoing medicines that you are doubtful of interaction, then consult a pharmacist or to be on the safe side ask your GP.

10) Is it safe to be consume Paracetamol by breastfeeding and pregnant women?

Ans: A doctor should be consulted and Paracetamol should be consumed only when benefits outweigh all the risks. If it poses severe side effects, then paracetamol should be replaced with a suitable substitute.

References

Last updated on : 26-09-2019

Disclaimer : Docprime doesn’t endorse or take any guarantee of the accuracy or completeness of information provided under this article and these are the views strictly of the writer. Docprime shall not be held responsible for any aspect of healthcare services administered with the information provided on this article.

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