FDA Finds Rare Skin Reactions to Tylenol

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A stock photo of painkiller Tylenol.

A stock photo of painkiller Tylenol.

CBS St. Louis (con't)

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ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – The Food and Drug Administration warns a popular fever and pain reliever can cause rare but serious skin reactions.

Acetaminophen, one of the most widely-used medicines in the U.S. and best known by one of its brand names, Tylenol, brought about skin problems in some very rare cases.

“From 1969 to 2012, they found 107 cases of these skin issues,” Matt Pitlik with the St. Louis College of Pharmacy explains. “However, it took that long to find that many cases in the millions and millions of people who have taken acetaminophen so far.”

While the odds of contracting such problems are rare, Pitlik says it’s worth knowing the signs anyway.

“You want to look for blisters and very, very red skin. Those are the two main signs, the two bad conditions that can happen,” he said. “It doesn’t look like hives, it doesn’t really itch all that much, but it can be very blistered and very red skin.”

Pitlik says he will continue recommending the drug for his patients and family.

Other drugs used to treat fever and pain, such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs ibuprofen and naproxen, already carry warnings about the risk of serious skin reactions.

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