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U.S. Health Coalition Issues Public Safety Message for Acetaminophen Users
Date:11/12/2013

WASHINGTON, Nov. 12, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- As cold and flu season kicks into high gear, the Acetaminophen Awareness Coalition (AAC) is issuing a nationwide safety message urging consumers to double check their medicine labels so they don't double up on medicines that contain acetaminophen when treating winter illnesses. Acetaminophen is found in more than 600 different medicines, including prescription (Rx) and over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers, fever reducers, sleep aids and numerous cough, cold and flu medicines. Each week, approximately 23 percent of U.S. adults use acetaminophen. It is safe and effective when used as directed, but there is a limit to how much can be taken in one day. Taking more than directed is an overdose and can lead to liver damage.

(Photo:  http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20131112/DC14130-INFO )

Americans suffer from an estimated one billion colds each year, and as many as 20 percent will get the flu. Seven in 10 people will reach for over-the-counter medicines, many of which contain acetaminophen, to treat fevers, sinus headaches and other unwelcome cold and flu symptoms.

"It is especially important for patients who regularly use medicines with acetaminophen for pain conditions such as arthritis or headaches, to 'Double Check, Don't Double Up' before taking a cold or flu medicine that also contains acetaminophen," said pharmacist Phil LaFoy, co-owner of Blount Discount Pharmacy in Tennessee and member of the National Community Pharmacists Association, a founding organization of the AAC. "Educating patients on safe acetaminophen use is the first step in preventing liver damage."

"Consumers should be diligent about reading their medicine labels, knowing the ingredient
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SOURCE Acetaminophen Awareness Coalition
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