Tylenol Overdose

Tylenol overdose may lead to serious side effects including liver failure in some consumers.  Speak with a Tylenol attorney if you have experienced liver damage resulting from a Tylenol overdose and find out if you have grounds to file a Tylenol lawsuit.

Recent research has examined the potential for unintentional overdose to occur in consumers taking even the proper dosage of Tylenol, which can lead to life-threatening liver failure. Tylenol (acetaminophen) is a North American brand of over-the-counter medication marketed to consumers to relieve pain, reduce fever and relieve the symptoms of cough, cold, allergies and flu. Tylenol is a brand name of acetaminophen and is owned by pharmaceutical company McNeil Consumer Health, which is a subsidiary of well-known drug company, Johnson & Johnson. McNeil Laboratories introduced Tylenol Elixir in 1955, which was initially only intended for children, although it quickly became one of the best-selling pain reliever drugs for adults and children alike in all of North America. Despite the popularity of Tylenol for pain relief, serious concerns have been raised about the safety of acetaminophen (Tylenol), due to data indicating that even consumers taking the proper dose of Tylenol may unintentionally overdose, potentially causing debilitating liver failure. If you or a loved one has suffered a Tylenol overdose, contact a Tylenol attorney to discuss your legal options.

Tylenol Overdose Symptoms

Although chronically taking maximum doses of Tylenol can cause a Tylenol overdose, Tylenol overdose symptoms can also occur as a result of a one-time unintentional overdose. Common symptoms of Tylenol overdose include:

  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Sweating
  • Irritability
  • Appetite loss

Over the 24 to 72 hours following a Tylenol overdose, the early symptoms may dissipate, but liver damage will begin to occur. The first symptom of liver damage is typically abdominal pain or tenderness in the upper right area, near the liver. The patient may then exhibit symptoms of liver damage, which includes:

  • Dark urine
  • Yellow eyes and skin (jaundice)
  • Confusion
  • Low blood sugar
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Bleeding

Tylenol Overdose Treatment and Prognosis

Treatment for Tylenol overdose typically involves pumping the patient's stomach to remove pill fragments. The patient's doctor or emergency room staff member may decide to treat the patient with activated charcoal, which binds and deactivates many medications. Patients who are thought to be at risk of suffering liver failure as a result of Tylenol overdose may receive treatment in the form of Mucomyst, a drug that works by indirectly replenishing glutathione, which detoxifies the toxic metabolite of acetaminophen. Tylenol overdose resulting in liver failure may also cause the patient to suffer from heart problems or kidney failure. Other complications may also occur, including infections, swelling of the brain, or multiple organ failure, all of which can lead to death.

FDA Warnings for Tylenol Overdose Side Effects

Even recommended doses of acetaminophen (Tylenol) have caused cases of acute liver failure. In fact, according to a 2006 study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, even healthy people taking Tylenol as recommended may suffer serious Tylenol side effects indicative of overdose side effects. Researchers reported that healthy adults taking a maximum dose of Tylenol for two weeks had abnormal liver test results. According to the FDA's Adverse Events Reporting System, reported cases of acute liver failure have increased from 89 in 1995 to 404 in 2005, and acetaminophen (Tylenol) is the drug most commonly associated with these reports.

Acetaminophen (Tylenol) is metabolized in the liver, which results in a by-product that can damage the liver. In most cases, this by-product is converted into a harmless substance by a certain antioxidant. Large doses of acetaminophen, however, can overwhelm the body's supply of this antioxidant, potentially resulting in irreversible damage to liver cells. In 2009, the FDA issued a final report recommending stronger warnings and dose limits on drugs containing acetaminophen, including Tylenol, due to an increased risk of liver failure from Tylenol overdose.

Tylenol Attorneys for Overdose Side Effects

Few consumers realize how common Tylenol overdosing is or the severity of side effects associated with a Tylenol overdose. Unfortunately, acetaminophen (Tylenol) is the most commonly used drug in the United States for treating pain and fever, even despite the life-threatening side effects potentially associated with the drug. If you or a loved one has suffered from a Tylenol overdose, contact a Tylenol attorney to discuss the benefits of filing a Tylenol lawsuit against McNeil Consumer Health (Johnson & Johnson). The goal of potential Tylenol lawsuits is to help victims of alleged Tylenol overdose side effects seek financial compensation for their injuries, the medical costs of treating their injuries, and the pain and suffering endured by victims and their families. By hiring a Tylenol lawyer to represent your case, you can protect your rights and hold the allegedly negligent drug company accountable for your injuries.

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