Did you know that taking extra Tylenol could significantly increase your risk for Tylenol acute liver failure from acetaminophen in the product? A lot of people didn’t, and have since filed a Tylenol lawsuit against manufacturer Johnson & Johnson.
The FDA has known about the potential for pain relieving drugs like Tylenol (acetaminophen) to cause serious liver problems for decades. Meanwhile, drug makers have sold them for years with inadequate instructions, failing to alert consumers to the risks of taking too many in one day, or the risk of combining different over the counter or prescription products that also contain acetaminophen.
FDA Requires New Warnings
In January 2011, the FDA announced that it was asking manufacturers of prescription combination products that contained acetaminophen to limit the amount to no more than 325 milligrams per tablet. The agency was also requiring manufacturers to add a black box warning to the label, alerting users to the risk of liver injury.
Back in 2009, the agency required labeling changes for over-the-counter products as well, requiring Tylenol and similar products to include alerts about the potential for liver toxicity and to warn consumers against using more than the recommended dose.
That same year, an agency advisory panel also called for a limit of the maximum daily dosage to be reduced from the former 4,000 mg a day to 3,250 milligrams a day”even less for those who consume three or more alcoholic drinks per day, since alcohol can increase the risk of Tylenol acute liver failure.
Tylenol Acute Liver Failure on the Rise
Some experts feel the current warnings aren’t yet adequate, however. Studies have pointed to a steady increase in cases of liver problems related to acetaminophen, suggesting that consumers do not yet realize the danger to their health. One study published in Hepatology, for example, showed that acetaminophen acute liver failure rose from 28 percent in 1998 to 51 percent in 2003. Nearly half of those cases were unintentional overdoses.
Today’s pharmacy shelves are full of cold, flu, allergy, and pain products, all of which may contain some Tylenol or acetaminophen. Consumers can easily double up on some of these products, quickly increasing their risk of liver injury. Those who take Tylenol for pain may also easily pop an extra two pills, thinking more is better, or fail to wait the recommended time before taking another dose.
A Tylenol lawyer is likely to assert that Johnson & Johnson and other manufacturers of acetaminophen have failed to adequately warn about the risks, or to provide consumers with maximum dosing instructions that will increase safety.
Manufacturers Failed to Warn of the Risks
Facing increased pressure from the FDA, consumer advocacy groups, and new research, Johnson and Johnson announced in 2011 that it would lower the maximum dose on Extra Strength Tylenol from 8 pills (4,000 mg) to 6 pills (3,000 mg). They’ve also launched a national initiative to educate consumers about the dangers of misusing Tylenol, which is an over-the-counter product that does not require a prescription to use.
Meanwhile, those who have experienced liver injuries are seeking the help of a Tylenol liver injury lawyer. Particularly the elderly, those who are frail or malnourished (such as those experiencing the flu), those with diabetes, and those taking other drug combinations, are at a higher risk of liver problems, and feel the drug makers didn’t do enough to warn them. Other individuals as well, such as cancer patients who take pain medications like Vicodin, may not have realized these medications also contain acetaminophen, and if injured, may be eligible for a Tylenol lawsuit. Others, likewise, who unknowingly over-used Tylenol are consulting Tylenol lawyers.
A Tylenol Lawyer Can Help
If you or a loved one has suffered from Tylenol acute liver failure as a result of using Tylenol or another acetaminophen medication, a Tylenol lawsuit may help you recover damages. The attorneys at Chaffin Luhana LLP are well educated in acetaminophen-related injuries, and are ready to help you. Call today for a free and confidential case evaluation at 1-888-480-1123.