Do you use Tylenol when you have pain?

If so, the next time you reach for your bottle of Tylenol, consider this: There is evidence that many people who take maximum doses of this over the counter pain reliever had abnormal livers.

In other words, taking Tylenol as recommended on the bottle can create problems with your liver.

In the study, 40% of participants showed signs of liver damage after just two weeks.

Also, the leading ingredient in Tylenol is acetaminophen, and researchers warned that it’s easy to take more than the maximum daily amount of acetaminophen because its found in other medications that people take routinely.

The study, which was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, pointed out that acetaminophen overdose is the leading cause of acute liver failure.

The New England Journal of Medicine reports that 8 to 10% of the annual kidney failures in the United States are caused by acetaminophen. This is 4,000 to 5,000 people every year who develop serious disorders from taking what is regularly purchased and consumed over the counter to cover up pain. (NEJM, 1994; 331: 1675-1678)

So to minimize the risk of damaging your liver, which can happen very quickly, you may want to natural forms of pain relief. Several options are now available in our office or the natural grocery store.

As an example, start taking a high quality fish oil. It has been widely proven to reduce inflammation and should help ease your joint pain.

* But the other important question to ask is: what is causing the inflammation? In other words, what is the cause of this symptom?

Misalignment or fixation of spinal joints or extremties (like shoulders, knees, elbows, wrists, feet, etc.) frequently cause inflammation. That being the case, doesn’t it make sense to have a specialist in biomechanics (like a skilled chiropractor) examine you to see whether this might be the cause of your problem?

** I have seen situations where a toe stubbed years ago (which didn’t even hurt anymore), long ago altered a patients walking, which caused knee, hip and finally back pain. The problem was corrected, however, when the toe misalignment was adjusted.

In summary:

  1. Please be careful with the over the counter drugs. They can cause some serious problems if they are used too often.
  2. Use natural anti-inflammatory agents (fish oils, MSM, ice) whenever needed.
  3. Ask yourself, am I treating the cause or the symptom? Then you make the choice.

If you have any questions, just email me. I’ll be happy to help you out.


Dr. Dan Greenlee