Paracetamol is one of the most common off the shelf drugs that is sold all over the world. It is the basic remedy for fever and body aches. However, latest study has shown that too much of intake of paracetamol can lead to gradual accumulation over time, which can lead to a fatal overdose in the long run. This overdose can also cause death. Further, the study has also shown that this kind of overdose is more dangerous when compared to one-time overdose consumption of the medicine. The condition is very dangerous because it cannot be readily diagnosed since the patient feels generally unwell and the last thing that doctors check for is paracetamol overdose.
An overdose of paracetamol caused over time can lead to death as well. Researchers of the study say that there is an urgent need, mainly so because paracetamol is such a widely used drug, to establish procedures to identify this problem of overdose and take immediate measures. A lot of people do not realize the fatality of taking more paracetamol over time. It usually happens when a person does not get relief with one dose and ends up taking another one. This causes an overdose but is not evident at the moment. If a person continues to do the same thing, an overdose can be a very possible occurrence. The damage slowly and steadily accumulates with progress in time. The person responsible for the research, Dr. Kenneth Simpson, said that long term repercussions of such overdoses are more fatal than single time overdose.
There is another major problem in the testing procedure for paracetamol overdose. Blood test is performed on the patient in order to evaluate the extent of paracetamol in the blood. In cases where people try to commit suicide, the amount or the concentration of paracetamol present in the blood can be known accurately. However, when the overdose happens over a prolonged duration of time, the concentration in blood is not high and hence, it becomes difficult to judge the level of overdose. Excessive concentration of paracetamol in blood can lead to damage to the liver and cause liver failure.
In order to reach this result, 663 people who came for consultation due to liver problems caused by paracetamol overdose were analyzed. Out of them, 161 suffered from prolonged overdose. It was found that their kidneys and liver was largely damaged although blood test showed lower concentration.