Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Johnson & Johnson launches new cap to curb Tylenol overdoses

WASHINGTON — Bottles of Tylenol will soon bear red warnings alerting users to the potentially fatal risks of taking too much of the popular pain reliever. The unusual step, disclosed by the company that makes Tylenol, comes amid a growing number of lawsuits and pressure from the federal government that could have widespread ramifications for a medicine taken by millions of people every day.

Johnson & Johnson says the warning will appear on the cap of new bottles of Extra Strength Tylenol sold in the United States starting in October and on most other Tylenol bottles in coming months. The warning will make it explicitly clear that the over-the-counter drug contains acetaminophen, a pain-relieving ingredient that's the nation's leading cause of sudden liver failure.

"We're always looking for ways to better communicate information to patients and consumers," said Dr. Edwin Kuffner, vice president of McNeil Consumer Healthcare, the Johnson & Johnson unit that makes Tylenol.

Overdoses from acetaminophen send 55,000 to 80,000 people to the emergency room in the United States each year and kill at least 500, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration. Acetaminophen can be found in more than 600 common over-the-counter and prescription products.

Tylenol is the first of these products to include such a warning label on the bottle cap. McNeil says the warning is a result of research into the misuse of Tylenol by consumers. The new cap message will read: "CONTAINS ACETAMINOPHEN" and "ALWAYS READ THE LABEL."

The move comes at a critical time for the company, which faces more than 85 personal injury lawsuits in federal court that blame Tylenol for liver injuries and deaths. At the same time, the FDA is drafting long-awaited safety proposals that could curtail the use of Tylenol and other acetaminophen products.

Safety experts are most concerned about "extra-strength" versions of Tylenol and other pain relievers with acetaminophen found in drugstores. A typical two-pill dose of Extra Strength Tylenol contains 1,000 milligrams of acetaminophen, compared with 650 milligrams for regular strength.

Starting in October, bottles of Tylenol sold in the United States will feature a warning on type saying “CONTAINS ACETAMINOPHEN” and “ALWAYS READ THE LABEL.” The warnings are hoped to deter overdoses from Tylenol and other acetaminophen products.

Associated Press

Starting in October, bottles of Tylenol sold in the United States will feature a warning on type saying “CONTAINS ACETAMINOPHEN” and “ALWAYS READ THE LABEL.” The warnings are hoped to deter overdoses from Tylenol and other acetaminophen products.

Safe dosage

Most experts agree that acetaminophen is safe when used as directed, which generally means taking 4,000 milligrams, or eight pills of Extra Strength Tylenol, or less a day.

Source: Associated Press

Johnson & Johnson launches new cap to curb Tylenol overdoses 08/29/13 [Last modified: Thursday, August 29, 2013 10:19pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

Copyright: For copyright information, please check with the distributor of this item, Associated Press.
    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. On the Camino de Santiago, Day 18: Despite feeling ill, this pilgrim passes the midpoint in her 500-mile journey on foot

    Travel

    Day 18: Lédigos to El Burgo Ranero: 34.3 km, 12.25 hours (Total for Days 1-18 = 428 km (266 miles)

    Today was a struggle.

  2. Former Rays/current Cubs manager Joe Maddon featured on NBC Sunday news show

    Blogs

    Former Rays and current Cubs manager Joe Maddon will be featured on this week's "Sunday Night with Megyn Kelly" show at 7 p.m. on NBC, the Harry Smith interview covering not just Maddon's on-field accomplishments but his extensive efforts to help his hometown of Hazleton, Pa.

    "Here's what's so …

    Joe Maddon talking with NBC News' Harry Smith.
  3. For starters: Souza returns to lineup

    Blogs

     

  4. Actor John Heard dies at age 72

    Blogs

    John Heard, who played so many roles in the '80s but was probably best known as the dad in the Home Alone movies, has died, according to media reports. He was 72.

  5. Linkin Park cancel tour, including Tampa concert, after death of singer Chester Bennington

    Blogs

    This news is not a surprise, but it is now official: Linkin Park has canceled their upcoming North American tour following this week's death of singer Chester Bennington.

    Linkin Park's Chester Bennington