Back pain that never goes away completely can undermine your quality of life. It can prevent you from participating in activities that bring you pleasure and security. The medications that we use to deal with the pain, while being life-savers in terms of providing relief from the suffering, expose us to potential harm.

Tylenol (acetaminophen) has been found to result in more than 40,000 cases of liver damge each year in the US. Some of these patients have died. Because of the misuse of this generally well tolerated drug, the FDA will limit its availability in combination drug products such as Percocet and Vicodin. The recommended upper limit has been 4000 mgms but will probably be reduced in the near future . A regular dose Tylenol tablet is 325 mgms, making twelve the maximum number of tablets/day. When you take the combinaton drug you may not be aware that you are ingesting the same drug as in Tylenol and inadvertently take a harmful overdose.

Some medications for persistent pain can cause other serious side effects, including death.

More on that next time.

~ Norman Marcus, MD
Norman Marcus Pain Institute, New York NY
 
“Your New York City Doctor”
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