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Some Children Get Too Much Medicine

November 19, 2001|Linda Marsa

A recent survey by Roper Worldwide, a marketing research firm, found that 61% of parents often give their kids two or more over-the-counter cold and cough medicines, almost half don't read the product labels, and one out of four don't know that giving their child a cold medicine and a fever reducer might mean they're ingesting double the recommended dose of medication.

Such practices can be dangerous, especially if such products contain acetaminophen, the active ingredient in popular medicines such as Tylenol. Acetaminophen can be toxic in high doses, triggering catastrophic liver failure.

Last month the American Academy of Pediatrics urged doctors to make parents aware of acetaminophen risks, and the fact that many products may be "hidden" sources of the drug. .

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