19-May-15 5:00 AM  CST

New Study Finds Acetaminophen Reduces More Than Pain

Tylenol, Panadol, Mapap, Liquiprin, regardless of the brand name you may readily recognize, the generic name is still acetaminophen. Acetaminophen has long been one of the most commonly used and familiar over the counter painkillers in the United States. Available as a tablet, caplet, liquid and even intravenously, acetaminophen has defiantly made its mark on the pharmaceutical industry. In addition to being a single ingredient drug product, acetaminophen is often found in combination with other medications such as oxycodone or cold and flu medications. However, not all the news about acetaminophen has been good.

Pharmacists and doctors have warned to the public for years that too much acetaminophen, more than 2,000mg in a day can cause irreversible damage to the liver. This becomes of even more concern in children due to the under development of their body systems. Now researchers have found evidence that acetaminophen may be responsible for reducing more than just pain and fever.

  A study recently published in  “Psychological Science”, showed that patients taking acetaminophen had diminished feelings of joy. In other words, acetaminophen and other products that contain acetaminophen may have the ability to “narrow the range of feelings” a person is able to feel. The study, conducted at Ohio State University, used 82 college students. The students were shown more than 40 photos that ranged from children with kittens to children who had been malnourished. Half of the students had been given 1000 mg of acetaminophen and the other half had been given a placebo. The results showed that those who had taken the acetaminophen had a far less emotional response over the photos than those who had not taken any acetaminophen.

 The researchers followed up their findings by testing another group of individuals, 85 to be exact, and found results to be similar. Although the results may not be completely definitive, it does prove acetaminophen may have properties we have not explored.



Melvin, D., (2015), “Study: Acetaminophen not only reduces pain, but pleasure too”, CNN, http://www.cnn.com/2015/04/15/health/study-acetaminophen-dulls-joy/index.html, retrieved, 25. April 2015


For additional information on this article, please contact:
Sandra Andrews
(717) 360-1159
Source: Sandy Andrews  

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