Acetaminophen (also known as Tylenol) is one of the most commonly used pain relievers and fever reducers in Alabama nursing homes. While it may be beneficial for reducing the symptoms of painful conditions, it can yield adverse side effects.
Use of acetaminophen has been linked to overdoses and health conditions such as drug-induced liver failure, kidney toxicity, bone fractures, and blood cancers.
How Does Acetaminophen Effect Nursing Home Residents?
More awareness must be paid to the use of acetaminophen among nursing home residents, especially those who have chronic conditions and take multiple medications.
The elderly also undergo age-related changes such as declines in muscle mass and bodily fluids, and increases in fat tissue.
Researchers looked further into the safety of acetaminophen in nursing homes by pulling data from the 18 month-long IQUARE study involving residents around 86 years old. They looked for evidence linking acetaminophen to heart attacks and strokes among nursing home residents in southwestern France.
Out of the 5,429 participants involved in the study, approximately 3,190 of them didn’t take acetaminophen; 2,239 of them did.
The drug wasn’t found to influence heart attacks, and among residents who had strokes, evidence suggests that it may have played a minor role. However, there was a noted “slightly higher risk” for stroke among residents who had diabetes.
The study author, Philippe Gerard, MD, cautions the use of this drug in nursing homes, “My personal message to the people in my everyday practice is that any drug they take may have some form of harmful side effect unknown to them, even those they can buy over the counter. It is always best to check with your health care provider before you take any new medication, and make sure you’re taking the dose that’s right for you.”
What To Do If Your Loved One’s Health Is Impacted By Drugs Or Medication
Nursing home staff are responsible for monitoring the effects drugs such as acetaminophen have on residents. If any drug administered in a nursing home produces side effects that can cause or worsen a health condition, it’s critical that you act fast on behalf of your loved one if you suspect a medication error in a nursing home.
An experienced nursing home abuse and neglect attorney at Braswell Murphy LLC can launch and investigation and devise a legal plan to hold negligent parties accountable. Our highly-skilled and compassionate legal team proudly serves the greater Mobile, Alabama area. Contact us today to find out how we can help you.