Researchers conducted systematic reviews comparing evidence of the analgesic effects of acetaminophen with placebo (saline or sterile water) in the treatment of nearly 50 common pain conditions. It was found that only knee and hip osteoarthritis, craniotomy, tension headache, and postpartum perineal pain were receptive to the drug. “Although acetaminophen is widely used, its effectiveness in relieving pain has only been established for a handful of conditions and its benefits are often modest,” the review found.
“High or moderate quality evidence that acetaminophen (typically 0.5-1 g, single or multiple doses) is superior to placebo for pain relief was available for only four of the 44 painful conditions examined.” most commonly used pain reliever in Australia. But there isn’t enough evidence to support acetaminophen’s ability to relieve pain associated with migraines, post-operative pain, dental procedures, infant middle ear infections, back pain, abdominal pain, and common cold-related headaches. “For most pain conditions we simply don’t have definitive evidence to know whether or not it works,” lead author of the review, Dr Christina Abdel Shaheed, told NCA NewsWire.
“For tension headaches we know it works better than placebo, but for most other conditions we simply lack the evidence to make strong or definitive claims about the effectiveness of acetaminophen.” “This MJA review for the first time collects all the evidence on the efficacy of acetaminophen to treat pain together in one document,” said Dr. Abdel Shaheed. The marketing of acetaminophen drugs also had to change, the review recommends. “Back pain guidelines should stop recommending acetaminophen,” said Dr. Abdel Shaheed.
“About 50% of back pain guidelines still recommend acetaminophen, even though we now know it’s ineffective for back pain. “Our review highlights the need for large, high-quality studies to reduce uncertainty about the efficacy of acetaminophen in alleviating common pain conditions. “The MJA review, notes Giovanni D’Agata, president of the” Rights Desk “, is a blow to paracetamol, which in 2018 became the most dominant over-the-counter analgesic following the decision to prescribe only drugs for codeine .