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Collins Children's Pill Guide
By Deborah Mitchell
HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.Copyright © 2007 Deborah Mitchell
All right reserved.
Acephen, Anacin-3, Datril, Feverall Suppositories, Jr. Strength Tylenol Caplets, Liquiprin, Phenaphen, St. Joseph Aspirin-Free, Suppap, Tempra, Tylenol Chewable Tablets, Tylenol Drops, Tylenol Elixir
Generic Available/Over-the-Counter Available
About this Drug
Acetaminophen is an analgesic (painkiller) and antipyretic (antifever). It relieves pain and fever by reducing production of substances in the body that cause these symptoms.
Acetaminophen rarely causes side effects if it is used as directed. However, contact your physician if your child experiences any side effects that are persistent or troubling, including any that are not listed here.
- Less common: anemia, rash. Contact your physician if your child has fever or yellowing of the eyes or skin.
How to Use this Drug
Acetaminophen is available in chewable tablets, regular tablets, capsules, liquid/elixir, drops, and suppositories. The dosages given here are ones that are usually recommended. However, you should consult your doctor about the specific brand or prescription of acetaminophen you have for your child andallow him or her to determine the most appropriate dose and schedule.
- Children younger than 4 months: 40 mg given 4 to 5 times daily
- Children 4 to 11 months: 80 mg given 4 to 5 times daily
- Children 1 to 2 years: 120 mg given 4 to 5 times daily
- Children 3 years: 160 mg given 4 to 5 times daily
- Children 4 to 5 years: 240 mg given 4 to 5 times daily
- Children 6 to 8 years: 320 mg given 4 to 5 times daily
- Children 9 to 10 years: 400 mg given 4 to 5 times daily
- Children 11 years: 480 mg given 4 to 5 times daily
- Children 12 years and older: 300 to 600 mg given 4 to 6 times daily; or 1,000 mg given 3 to 4 times daily.
Do not give acetaminophen to your child for more than three consecutive days without consulting your doctor. If you use acetaminophen to treat fever, do not wake your child to give the medication, as it is important for your child to sleep. If your child misses a dose, give it as soon as you remember. However, if it is within an hour of the next dose, do not give the skipped dose and continue with the regular dosing schedule.
Time Until it Takes Effect
Typically provides results within 30 minutes to 2 hours.
Possible Drug, Food, and/or Supplement Interactions
Tell your doctor if your child is taking any prescription or over-the-counter medications or any vitamins, herbs, or other supplements. Possible interactions with acetaminophen may include the following:
- Use of barbiturates (e.g., phenobarbital, carbamazepine, phenytoin, rifampin) can increase the risk of liver damage.
- Do not give your child acetaminophen with any of the following drugs for more than a few days unless your physician is supervising: aspirin or other salicylates, diclofenac, diflunisal, etodolac, fenoprofen, ibuprofen, indomethacin, ketoprofen, ketorolac, meclofenamate, mefenamic acid, naproxen, oxaprozin, phenylbutazone, piroxicam, sulindac, tenoxicam, and tolmetin.
Symptoms of Overdose
Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, sweating, and loss of appetite. Acetaminophen overdose can cause significant liver damage. If an overdose occurs, seek immediate medical attention and bring the drug container(s) with you.
Things to Tell Your Doctor
- Tell your physician if your child has had allergic reactions to any medications in the past, if he or she is taking any medications now, or if your child has any disease or medical condition.
- Contact your physician immediately if your child has a fever of 105° F or higher.
- If your child is taking acetaminophen to relieve pain and the pain lasts for more than 5 days, the pain gets worse, or new symptoms develop, consult your doctor as soon as possible, as these are signs of a serious condition.
- Consult your doctor if your child becomes pregnant while taking acetaminophen.
- If your child is taking any other medicationprescription or over-the-counter drugscheck to see if they contain acetaminophen, as taking such medications along with acetaminophen may cause an overdose.
- Store acetaminophen in a tightly closed container and keep at room temperature away from excess heat and moisture (e.g., the bathroom, near a stove or sink).
- Do not allow the liquid and suppository forms of acetaminophen to freeze.
Acetaminophen plus Codeine
APAP with Codeine, Capital with Codeine, Codaphen, Margesic, Myapap with Codeine, Phenaphen with Codeine, Proval, Ty-Pap with Codeine, Ty-Tab with Codeine, Tylenol with Codeine
About this Drug
Acetaminophen + codeine is a narcotic analgesic (painkiller) used to treat mildly to moderately severe pain. The acetaminophen component helps reduce pain and fever, and the codeine portion helps reduce moderate to severe pain, suppresses cough, and induces a calming effect. Both of these drugs suppress certain brain functions that are associated with pain perception and emotional response to pain. Codeine also has an effect on the cough reflex.
Contact your doctor if your child experiences any side effects that are persistent or troubling, including any that are not listed here.
- Most common: constipation, dizziness, drowsiness, dry mouth, lightheadedness, nausea, sedation, shortness of breath, urinary retention, vomiting
- Less common/rare: abdominal pain, rash, allergic reactions (difficulty breathing, hives, swelling), depression, itching. Seek immediate medical help if your child suffers an allergic reaction.
How to Use this Drug
Acetaminophen + codeine is available as capsules, elixir, oral suspension, and tablets. Generally, children are given the elixir or oral suspension rather than the capsules or tablets. The dosages given here are ones that are usually recommended for children. However, your doctor may provide different dosing instructions, which should be followed.
- Children 3 to 6 years: 1 teaspoon elixir 3 or 4 times daily
- Children 7 to 12 years: 2 teaspoons elixir 3 or 4 times daily
- Children 13 years and older: 1 tablespoon every 4 hours as needed. For tablets, 15 to 60 mg of codeine and 300 to 1,000 mg acetaminophen per dose.
Excerpted from Collins Children's Pill Guide by Deborah Mitchell Copyright © 2007 by Deborah Mitchell. Excerpted by permission.
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