One of the most common over-the-counter medications with which just about everybody is familiar – and probably has used at some point – is Tylenol. Used to treat headaches, arthritis pain, sinus headaches and pain, muscle and body aches, and more, millions of people use Tylenol weekly, according to ProPublica. While millions of people use Tylenol without any adverse side effects, others experience dangerous consequences from Tylenol poisoning. If you or a loved one suffered serious harm, speak with a dangerous drug attorney as soon as possible.
What’s in Tylenol?
Despite its popularity, few who take Tylenol really understand just what it is they’re taking. The active ingredient in Tylenol is acetaminophen, which is one of the most common drugs in the U.S. for treating pain and fever, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. One of the benefits of acetaminophen is that unlike other pain and fever-reduction drugs, acetaminophen isn’t linked to stomach bleeding or discomfort. However, when taking more than the recommended dosage, serious liver damage can occur.
Acetaminophen and Liver Damage
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) explains that acetaminophen causes liver damage by converting into a toxic metabolite. The metabolite then binds to liver proteins, which causes injury to surrounding cells. The more acetaminophen ingested, the more toxic metabolite that’s produced, and therefore the greater risk and extent of injury.
The FDA recommended that doctors and other healthcare professionals stop prescribing and recommending prescription combination drugs with more than 325 mg of acetaminophen per tablet, capsule, etc. It cited lack of benefit in taking more of the drug per dosage unit and the potential benefit of reducing the amount per dosage. It notes limiting acetaminophen per dosage unit can reduce risks of severe liver damage from inadvertent acetaminophen overdose.
The FDA also recommends limiting consumption of acetaminophen to 4,000 mg per day – one tablet of Extra Strength Tylenol can contain as much as 500 mg, so reaching this limit is not difficult.
A 2004 article appearing in the journal Hepatology states that acetaminophen overdoes are the leading cause of calls to poison control centers through the U.S., and is also the cause of 56,000 emergency room visits per year; 2,600 hospitalizations; and approximately 458 deaths due to acute liver failure. In fact, acetaminophen causes more cases of acute liver failure than all other medication types combined.
Lawsuits for Serious Tylenol Side Effects
Because taking Tylenol can cause liver damage, even when taken as directed, there have been a number of lawsuits against the drug manufacturing company. These lawsuits allege that Tylenol makers failed to warn consumers adequately of the dangers of Tylenol and that Tylenol can lead to acute liver failure, liver transplant, death and hospitalization.
If you or a loved one experienced liver failure due to Tylenol, a lawsuit can help you recover the damages you need to pay for your medical bills, lost wages, funeral or burial expenses, and compensation for pain and suffering. The statute of limitations for filing a defective drug lawsuit for damages is two years in Pennsylvania, so you need to act quickly.
Seek Legal Recourse Now for Damages Caused by Tylenol
Victims should consult an attorney about whether they have a valid case against the drug manufacturer. There are strict rules for filing a claim against a drug company, and going this alone can be daunting. The plaintiff must establish liability or negligence and present evidence of damages related to the drug's serious side effects.
At Cordisco & Saile LLC, our attorneys will provide an initial free case consultation to help you better understand your case. To schedule your first meeting with our legal team today, call our offices now at 215-642-2335.