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    Monday, March 05, 2007

    Tylenol vs. Motrin: A new study says that Motrin beats Tylenol (and codeine, too!) for pain relief in kids:

    Deciding which medicine to give a child in pain just got easier: The first head-to-head study of three common painkillers found that ibuprofen works best, at least for kids with broken bones, bruises and sprains.

    Available generically and under the brand names Advil and Motrin, ibuprofen beat generic acetaminophen and codeine in an emergency room study of 300 children treated at a Canadian hospital.

    The youngsters, ages 6 to 17, were randomly assigned to receive standard doses of one of the three medicines. They then periodically rated their pain. Half an hour later, ratings were similar in the three groups. But starting an hour after taking the medicine, children who got ibuprofen reported substantially greater pain relief than the other two groups.

    Children rated their pain on a 100-point scale before and after taking the medicine. At 60 minutes afterward, scores for children who got ibuprofen had dropped 24 points, compared with 12 points for the acetaminophen group and 11 points for the codeine group. The differences remained at 120 minutes.

    This wasn't one of those dodgey studies that compare low doses of one medication with high doses of another. They did actually use standard dosages of all three medications. However, the results shouldn't be too surprising. All of the patients had musculoskeltal injuries such as fractures or sprains or contusions. These sorts of injuries have a large component of inflammation as the source of pain. Of the three drugs tested, ibuprofen is the only one that has an anti-inflammatory effect. Which is why doctors usually recommend drugs like Motrin after a sprain or strain. Sometimes intuition turns out to be right.

    posted by sydney on 3/05/2007 08:01:00 AM 2 comments


    So, does that mean ibuprofin is a better choice for arthritic pain than Tylanol?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:03 PM  

    This makes me very nervous. Ibuprofen is great for inflammation pain, but risky for intestinal bleeding. While I realise there are other issues (like liver damage and constipation) with the other drugs in the study, as a person with crohn's (who has no-one else in the family with it) I would be very careful about giving my (hypothetical) children ibuprofen.

    By Blogger Placebogirl, at 8:26 AM  

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