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What You Need to Know About Acetaminophen

Edited by Claire Butler


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Acetaminophen is one of the most common drug ingredients in Canada. It can be found in more than 600 different prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) medications under a range of different brand names. The word “acetaminophen” may sound unfamiliar to you, but you probably know many common brand name medicines that contain it, such as Tylenol®. Keep reading to learn more about how acetaminophen can be used safely and effectively in adults.



What is acetaminophen?


Acetaminophen is an analgesic (pain reliever) and an antipyretic (fever reducer). It is used to manage symptoms of fever and pain from headaches, cold & flu, muscle aches, menstrual cramps, arthritis, back pain, toothaches, and vaccination reactions.


Fun fact: acetaminophen is called paracetamol in some countries.



What over-the-counter products contain acetaminophen?


Acetaminophen may come alone or in combination with other medicinal ingredients. Here are some common OTC products that contain acetaminophen: