Acetaminophen is the most common drug ingredient in America. More than 600 medicines contain acetaminophen. These include both prescription medicines and medicines available without a prescription, also called “over-the-counter,” or “OTC” medicines. To prevent acetaminophen overdose, you need to be able to read labels and recognize when their medicines contain acetaminophen. The active ingredients in OTC medicines are clearly listed on the label, and the word “acetaminophen,” is listed on the front of the package or bottle and in the Active Ingredient section of the Drug Facts label. On prescription labels, acetaminophen is sometimes listed as “APAP,” “acetam,” or other shorted versions of the word. To know what is in your medicines, read the list of active ingredients on the label each and every time you take a medicine.
You may be surprised to learn just how many medicines contain this acetaminophen:
Common Over-the-Counter Brand Name Medicines Containing Acetaminophen
- Alka-Seltzer Plus LiquidGels®
- Formula 44®
- Powders Liquiprin®
- Saint Joseph®
- Aspirin-Free Singlet®
- TYLENOL® Brand Products
- *And store brands
Common Prescription Medicines Containing Acetaminophen
- Hydrocodone Bitartrate
- Tylenol® with Codeine
- *And generic medicines
[Source: Acetaminophen Awareness Coalition; www.KnowYourDose.org]
For a comprehensive list of OTC and prescription medicines that contain acetaminophen, visit: the National Library of Medicine’s web site.