Tylenol is one of the top-selling pain relievers available, controlling 35% of the pain killer market in North America. The brand name Tylenol (acetaminophen) is owned by McNeil Consumer Health, which is a subsidiary of pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson. The over-the-counter drug was first introduced in 1955 as Tylenol Elixir, which was marketed by McNeil for children specifically. However, Tylenol quickly became popular among adults and children alike, and is commonly used to treat pain, reduce fever, and relieve symptoms of the flu, allergies, cough, and cold. Although Tylenol has become increasingly popular in recent years, serious concerns have been raised about the safety of the medication. An emerging body of research has identified Tylenol use as a potential risk factor for the development of life-threatening side effects like overdose and liver failure. If you took Tylenol and have since suffered from serious side effects, contact a Tylenol attorney to discuss your legal options.
Liver failure occurs when large portions of the liver become damaged beyond repair, preventing the liver from functioning properly. Acute liver failure, which is associated with acetaminophen (Tylenol) overdose, occurs rapidly, sometimes in as little as 48 hours. Liver failure is particularly dangerous because the symptoms of this condition are often attributed to other disorders, sometimes making the early stages of liver failure difficult to diagnose. Initial symptoms of liver failure include diarrhea, nausea, fatigue and loss of appetite. As liver failure progresses, symptoms may become more severe, requiring urgent care. These include jaundice, confusion, bleeding easily, swollen abdomen, and even coma.
Liver failure is a serious condition requiring immediate medical care and can be fatal. If diagnosed early enough, acute liver failure caused by an overdose of acetaminophen (Tylenol) is sometimes treatable and can be reversible. Unfortunately, if liver failure goes without treatment for too long, the liver can become damaged beyond repair, resulting in life-threatening complications. In this case, liver failure treatment will revolve around saving whatever portion of the liver is still functioning. If the liver is beyond saving, a liver transplant may be required.
Research in the late 1990s began to show that acetaminophen (Tylenol) was a major cause of acute liver failure in the United States, with up to half of cases due to unintentional overdose. In light of Tylenol side effect information, the FDA began taking steps to reduce the incidence of acetaminophen-related liver failure, although it wasn’t until 2009 that the agency finally recommended stronger warnings and dose limits on acetaminophen-containing drugs like Tylenol. These labeling requirements included specific warnings about liver injury, the potential for alcohol use to increase the risk of liver damage, and the dangers of using more than one product containing acetaminophen. According to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association in 2006, even healthy adults taking maximum doses of Tylenol for two weeks had abnormal liver test results. Furthermore, the FDA’s Adverse Events Reporting System received 404 reports of acute liver failure in 2005, a significant increase from 89 in 2005, and acetaminophen (Tylenol) was the drug most commonly associated with these reports.
Acetaminophen (Tylenol) causes three times as many cases of liver failure as all other drugs combined, and accounts for 39% of all instances of liver failure in the United States. If you or a loved one has suffered from liver failure which you believe to be linked to Tylenol, contact a Tylenol attorney for legal help. You may be entitled to financial compensation for your injuries, medical expenses, and pain and suffering, which you can collect by filing a Tylenol lawsuit against McNeil (Johnson & Johnson). Drug companies like McNeil are responsible for producing and distributing safe medications, and should be held accountable for any adverse side effects sustained by consumers of their products. Unfortunately, some pharmaceutical companies intentionally conceal the more serious side effects of their medications in an attempt to make their product more appealing to the public. This deceptive practice exposes millions of consumers to unnecessary harm and possibly even death. By hiring an experienced Tylenol lawyer to represent your case, you can protect your rights and collect the compensation you deserve.