M Rabinovich, S Shani, Z Ben-Zvi

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting Abstractpeer-review


Drugs containing Acetaminophen as a single active ingredient are included in the list of over-the-counter (OTC) drugs allowed to be sold in non-pharmacy stores in Israel beginning mid-2005. In an event of severe overdose, Acetaminophen may cause severe liver damage, which may result death if not treated urgently. OBJECTIVE:1) To examine the knowledge and perception of parents to children and adolescents regarding the safety, adverse effects and toxicity of Acetaminophen OTC preparations; and 2)To compare this knowledge to scientific facts from medical literature and the experience of leading pediatricians and clinical pharmacologists. METHODS:1) Interviews of four leading Pediatricians/Clinical pharmacologists; and 2) A survey of 193 parents, which took place in three emergency pediatric clinics of “Maccabi Healthcare Services” (HMO) in central Israel and among non-medical headquarters staff. The answers were processed using statistical software. Influences of several demographic factors on parents’ answers were examined. RESULTS: In total, 65% of the enrolled parents had the perception that non-prescription drugs might be harmful if not used properly, while 55% of them thought that Acetaminophen might be harmful if not used properly. In the higher education group more parents thought that Acetaminophen had had adverse effects. Higher proportion of parents of two or more children felt they had knew how to use Acetaminophen brands properly compared to parents of one child. More than 60% of the parents reported that they usually purchase Acetaminophen brands without a prescription. About 80% read the patient’s insert. CONCLUSIONS: Enrolled parents perceive Acetaminophen brands to be safer than the average non-prescription drug, even though it is known that in an event of over-dosage Acetaminophen is more toxic than most other non-prescription drugs. More educated parents in the survey sample were more aware of the dangers of improper use of Acetaminophen.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)411
Number of pages1
JournalValue in Health
Issue number8
StatePublished - Jun 2005


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