Painkiller That Kills
Do you know what’s in your prescription and over the counter medication? You’re probably aware medication contains fillers, but it may also contain substances that are bad for you. Fillers and active ingredients can cause allergic reactions. One common painkiller causes hundreds of deaths every year.
Dangers Of Acetaminophen
Acetaminophen, sold over the counter as Tylenol, may be one of the most damaging medications available. It is also the most commonly taken.
Every year, poison control centers receive more than 100,000 calls related to acetaminophen overdose. It causes over 56,000 annual visits to the emergency room and an average of 458 yearly deaths.
Liver failure causes most of those deaths. In fact, acetaminophen poisoning causes almost half of the overall cases of liver failure in the United States. At standard doses, when humans metabolize acetaminophen they release toxic N-acetyl-benzoquinone imine. The more they take, the more toxin the body creates during digestion. Every person processes medication differently, and there is a thin line between a safe dose and one that causes liver damage.
People with a lower than average body weight or who are fasting may not have the glutathione needed to safely break down acetaminophen. Patients taking low doses repeatedly have experienced liver toxicity, especially when they haven’t ingested adequate nutrition.
The danger is especially acute in children. Doctors often recommend parents administer Tylenol when children and infants have fever. A parent might think they’re helping their infant by giving them medication and end up in the emergency room. If a child has a stomach condition that causes vomiting or diarrhea, they may not have enough nutrients in their system to process acetaminophen. Their risk of kidney and liver damage increases.
Overdoses Are Unintentional
People take acetaminophen for pain, and they often lose track of how much they’re taking. The recommended maximum daily dose for adults is 4,000 mg. Individuals might take eight 500 mg tablets throughout the day and lose count of how many they have consumed, taking more when their pain doesn’t go away. Often, they think they’re just taking slightly above the recommended amount, not realizing that small change can result in toxicity.
When patients suddenly experience signs of overdose, it may take time for doctors to isolate the cause. With intentional overdose, it’s usually evident when the patient took the medication and how much they took. In accidental acetaminophen overdose, blood levels may appear low even though liver damage is acute. The patient loses precious time while doctors scramble to find out what’s wrong.
Not Just Tylenol
Over 600 over the counter and prescription medications contain acetaminophen. Individuals might take Tylenol for pain, not realizing their antihistamine, decongestant or prescription also contains high doses.
Brand name over the counter drugs like NyQuil, Robitussin, Theraflu, Sudafed and Triaminic all contain acetaminophen, as do their generics. Prescription Oxycodone, Tramadol and Vicodin all include it as well.
So what should individuals do when they need prescription or over the counter medications to treat ongoing medical conditions? It’s possible to obtain the medication you need without fillers or unhealthy ingredients when you get them from a compounding pharmacist.
What Compounding Pharmacists Do
Originally all medications were compounded. Pharmacists measured individual medication components and dispensed them to patients on an as-needed basis. During the 1950s and 60s, mass production became more the norm and pharmacists switched to distributing controlled substances that were already mixed.
However, mass production doesn’t meet individual needs. Pharmacy compounding creates personalized medication. Pharmacists mix specific ingredients at the right strength and provide only the necessary ingredients. Compounding provides precise strengths, makes unique dosage forms and flavors available, and excludes ingredients that might cause allergic reactions in specific patients.
If patients can’t take medication in a pill form, compounding pharmacists might supply it as a nasal spray or topical gel. If common dermatological formulas contain irritants, compounding pharmacists can create a customized solution with the same medication. Sometimes children or pets won’t take prescriptions because they have a strange taste or odor. Compounded medications come in specialized flavors.
Truly Healthy Medicine
If you’re taking medication to heal or to stay well, you want to be sure you’re doing the best thing for your body. Buffers, binders, fillers, colorants, preservatives and coatings can be bad for you. Avoid the proteins, alcohols, artificial sweeteners and other ingredients commonly found in medication by choosing a prescription that’s created uniquely for you.
Compounding Pharmacy of America removes fillers and unnecessary active ingredients, including acetaminophen. We ship to the following states:
- New Jersey
- New York, Virginia
- Washington D.C.
Contact us to speak with a compounding pharmacist today.