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Acetaminophen Amounts Limited in Prescription Narcotics

Aschenbrenner, Diane S. MS, RN

AJN, American Journal of Nursing: May 2011 - Volume 111 - Issue 5 - p 21
doi: 10.1097/01.NAJ.0000398043.54557.42
Drug Watch

* Prescription narcotic analgesics containing acetaminophen will now be limited to an acetaminophen dose of 325 mg. This is an attempt to minimize the risk of acetaminophen overdosage, which can lead to acute liver failure and even death.

* A black box warning will also be added to the label to highlight the risk of liver damage.

* Over-the-counter acetaminophen products aren't currently being limited to 325 mg.

Diane S. Aschenbrenner is the course coordinator for undergraduate pharmacology at Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing in Baltimore, MD. She also coordinates Drug Watch: dianea@son.jhmi.edu.

© 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.