© 2018 by Sanford Severin, MD

Dr. Sanford L. Severin

San Ramon, CA 94582 USA


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Do You Take Tylenol for Low Back Pain?

March 22, 2018

Many Americans take Tylenol for low back pain. If you are one of those who do, you are in good company or bad company depending on how you look at it. We believe that you are in bad company. This is why.

A recent review in The British Medical Journal concluded that Tylenol doesn't really help for that kind of pain because it is an analgesic. In other words it mutes the pain but does nothing to reduce the inflammation that is causing it. In fact it may hurt more than it may help. For example patients on acetaminophen were almost four times more likely to have abnormal liver function. Furthermore Tylenol can cause liver damage if the recommended dose is exceeded.

If you have new onset low back pain try heat, walking and stretching. If you need pain relief use Ibuprofen or Naproxen because they also decrease inflammation. If the pain does not respond within a week consult a physician.


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