The paracetamol It is a medicine that we usually have all, or almost all, in our private home medicine cabinet. Even, it is not surprising to carry it inside our bags and purses daily or that it is one of the essential drugs on our travels and vacations. For any (mild) pain we may have, it is not rare or unusual to use this common pain reliever. However, we must act carefully and take into account the risks: Abusing paracetamol or taking it frequently and continuously can have serious consequences for our health.
“Segjoin the data published in the Annual Report of the National Health System 2017 (posted on December 21, 2018), we found that paracetamol is the second most widely consumed active ingredient in Spain ”, exposes to EL ESPAÑOL Juan Gabriel García Ballesteros, coordinator of the Management Working GroupDrug n, Inertia ClUnique and Patient Safety of the Spanish Society of Primary Care Physicians(SEMERGEN).
Thus, the first The best-selling active ingredient in Spain is the omeprazole, followed by paracetamol and simvastatin (a drug used to lower blood cholesterol levels). Likewise, adds the doctor, this data is also endorsed if the drug groupsmost consumed in Spain, being It’sstos los analgIt’sphysics, among which we would include paracetamol.
Liver problems, ulcers, and even sudden death
Paracetamol is a painkiller alreadyntityrmico what is indicated especially for headaches, mild and moderate fevers or malaise in general. However, its efficacy, according to different studies, has not been proven. neither in the treatment of the flu nor in the treatment of painit’s back.
As with any medicine, it is important Do not exceed the recommended dose and not misuse. Paracetamol and other drugs are safe and effective in their recommended doses, which in the case of paracetamol should not exceed 4g / day. In this article We explain the uses and misuses of this medicine.
Currently, since last February, 1g paracetamol has already beenor you can buy it without a prescription.
“With the entry into force last February of the Spanish Verification Systemn of the Medication, All drugs have a label in their containers.I say QR with which they will be registered after their sale. All this system does is prevent medications such as 600 mg ibuprofen or 1g paracetamol from being dispensed without a prescription.It’sdica, that is, comply with the legislation currently in force“, Explains García Ballesteros. This new regulation, he adds, does not apply to medicines that do not require a prescription.It’stip like the paracetamol 500 or 650mg.
One of the main risks of overusing this fármaco or not make responsible use of It’sl is that it can cause problems in the hígado. Secún explains the Foundationón Spainñwave of the digestive tract (FEAD), paracetamol is afáIt is safe as long as it is administered in the appropriate doseIt’srecommended tactics. SHowever, if it is consumed at higher doses than those usually recommended, it mayíTo be tóxico for the hícattle: “When acetaminophen is consumed at doses too high, they also occurIt’sn a lot of substances tóxicas that the hígado cannot debug, occasionándose así el dañor in the h itselfícattle“, he explains on his website.
“Seemingly innocuous drugs such as paracetamol can have significant health risks for patients. Paracetamol in excessive amounts can lead to death“, says Garcíto Ballesteros. Thus, a study published four years agoñyou in the magazine Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases concludedíwhy taking paracetamol continuously caníincrease the chances of having a disease by up to 50% úlcera, 68% más those of suffering a heart attack or even a stroke and up to 63% más of possibilities of deathsúbite.
SegúGarc explainsíto Ballesteros, the greatest risk of paracetamol is the possible poisonings. “Toxicity occurs primarily in the hígado, being dose-dependent. Poisonings are usually caused by massive ingestion of carávoluntary cter in suicide attempts, or less frequently from hepatic overdoseólegs, alcoholólicos and malnourished who take it criticallyónica“.
The doses considered tóxicas of paracetamol in taking única, añfor this professional are the following: “7.5g in pacientes andílicos, hepatólegs or malnourished or 10 g in healthy patients; dose of 20-25 g in taking única can be lethal. In niñthose under 12 toñThe 40 mg / kg doses ingested in 24 hours are alsoIt’sn considered tóxicas. Paracetamol poisoning in cases más severe can evolve to a liver failureáfulminant ethics with coma, bleeding and sometimes death“.
Self-care sí, automedicación no
It is not uncommon that from time to time, for example if our head hurts a little, we take somethingún fármaco already known to us, which we have used in other situations for the same purposes. That somehow let’s take care of ourselves.
GarcíBallesteros is shown favorable to self-care of patients in minor processes. That is to say “use the medications in the same doses, for the same indications and for the time indicated previously indicated by a mIt’sI say“. But, of course, it is not conducive to self-medication.ón. Self-care and self-medicationón they are two very different things.
“We self-medicateón is to use a drug in quantity, circumstances or indications other than as recommended by amIt’sI say, which always carries risks for patients“, Explain. Therefore, the doctor insists that, in minor processes, they can be used “if necessary medications already prescribed to the patient and provided that the same conditions are repeated“. “Self-care sí, automedicación no“, he claims.
“We live in one overly medicalized society. We believe there is ‘a Píldora for every disease’. This leads us to over-medicalize, on occasions, minor or transitory processes, than the person himself with a míspirit of care or with the necessary patience is able to overcome“, Explain. If we believe that we need the use of a drug, “the key is to use it based on informationón correct and of quality; always check the leaflet of each medicine, where information appearsón reliable“, concludes.