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Fever: What Medicine Suits You?

The typical temperature of the human body is between 36.5°C and 37.5°C. A fever is one of the ways your body fights infection or inflammation caused by microorganisms such as the flu virus. Raising the temperature strengthens the immune system’s ability to fight illnesses and destroy microorganisms. While a fever is unpleasant, it is usually not a cause for alarm and resolves within a few days. Taking a paracetamol-containing medication, such as Paracetamol, Ibuprofen and Panadol are the top three medications we find that can provide utmost help to alleviate fever-related symptoms. 

1. Paracetamol

Paracetamol, Panadol. Uphamol and many others, has gone a long way since becoming the most extensively used anti fever and pain drug in Malaysia. The majority of Malaysians are knowledgeable about the right way to take paracetamol, which is readily available in grocery stores, hypermarkets, and pharmacies.

When taken in the recommended dose, paracetamol is both safe and effective for lowering body temperature caused by fever. However, paracetamol can be harmful if used in excess of the recommended dose.

Paracetamol is also beneficial for mild to severe pain, such as osteoarthritis, migraine, and tension headache. However, patients should always seek medical counsel before using paracetamol for an extended period of time. Paracetamol is also available in combination with other fever medicine such as antihistamines to alleviate symptoms associated with fever, such as a running nose.

What Is The Purpose Of Paracetamol?

Paracetamol is used to treat pain (and discomfort) associated with a variety of different types of headaches, toothaches, backaches, arthritic pain, muscular aches, osteoarthritis, menstrual/period pain, and fever or discomfort associated with fever.

Administration And Dosage

Paracetamol is frequently administered orally in the form of solutions, pills, or effervescent tablets. Additionally, it is available in a variety of strengths. For patients who are unable to take paracetamol orally, paracetamol can be administered through a rectal suppository.

Unless prescribed by a physician, it is not recommended to consume paracetamol for more than 10 days in adults or 5 days in children for self-medication. Unless prescribed by a physician, paracetamol should not be used for more than three days in a high fever state. Adults should take 500mg every 4-6 hours or 1g every 4-6 hours as needed, but the total daily dose should never exceed 4g.

Prior To Taking Paracetamol

Paracetamol is usually considered to be safe when used in the recommended dose. Always ensure that no more than one paracetamol-containing medication is taken at the same time. Check the label of your medications to ensure that you are not taking more than the suggested dose. Typically, pharmaceutical labels include a list of the medication’s ingredients.

Adverse Drug Reactions/Side Effects

The majority of people who use paracetamol have no substantial negative effects. However, notify your doctor immediately if you suffer any serious side effects, including an increased tendency to bleed, bruises, or indications of infection, such as fever or sore throat.

Consumption of paracetamol on a continuous basis or in excess of the recommended amount may result in liver damage. Seek medical attention immediately if you develop any of the following liver damage symptoms: 

  • Nausea and vomiting that persists
  • Yellowing of the eyes/skin
  • Black urine
  • Stomach/abdominal discomfort
  • Excessive exhaustion
Interactions Between Drugs

Always inform your doctor or pharmacist of the medications you are taking to avoid any drug interactions.

Dose Missed

If you miss a dosage, take it as soon as you remember. However, if the next dose is approaching, omit the missing dose and continue taking the prescription as scheduled. Never take a double dose.

Storage

Keep all medications out of the reach of children and away from sources of light and moisture. Do not store it in the bathroom. 

2. Ibuprofen
Uses

Ibuprofen is used to treat a variety of different types of pain, including headaches, tooth pain, menstrual cramps, muscle pains, and arthritis. It is also used to treat fevers and minor aches and pains associated with the common cold or flu. Ibuprofen is an anti-inflammatory medication classified as a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medicine (NSAID). It works by inhibiting the development of certain naturally occurring chemicals that induce inflammation in the body. This effect contributes to the reduction of edema, discomfort, and temperature.

If you are treating a chronic ailment such as arthritis, speak with your doctor about non-drug therapy options or the use of alternative pharmaceuticals to manage your pain. Additionally, even if you have previously used the product, check the label for ingredients. The manufacturer may have altered the formulation. Apart from that, items with identical names may include a variety of distinct substances intended for a variety of different reasons. Taking the incorrect product could be harmful.

Side Effects

It is possible to experience an upset stomach, nausea, vomiting, headache, diarrhea, constipation, dizziness, or drowsiness. Notify your doctor or pharmacist promptly if any of these effects persist or worsen.

If your physician has recommended this drug, keep in mind that your physician determined that the benefit to you outweighs the risk of adverse effects. Many people who take this drug do not experience significant adverse effects.

Precautions

Inform your doctor or pharmacist before using ibuprofen if you are allergic to it, aspirin, or other NSAIDs (such as naproxen, celecoxib), or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive chemicals that may cause allergic reactions or other adverse reactions. Consult your pharmacist for additional information.

Inform your doctor or pharmacist of your medical history, particularly of: asthma (including a history of breathing problems worsening after taking aspirin or other NSAIDs), blood disorders (such as anemia, bleeding/clotting problems), nasal polyps, heart disease (such as a previous heart attack), high blood pressure, liver disease, stroke, and throat/stomach/intestinal problems (such as bleeding, heartburn, ulcers).

Interactions

Interactions between drugs might alter the way they operate or raise your chance of experiencing major adverse effects. This publication is not exhaustive in its coverage of possible medication interactions. Maintain a list of all products you use (including prescription/over-the-counter medications and herbal supplements) and discuss it with your doctor and pharmacist. Without your doctor’s approval, do not begin, stop, or modify the dosage of any medication.

Aliskiren, ACE inhibitors (such as captopril, lisinopril), angiotensin II receptor blockers (such as losartan, valsartan), cidofovir, corticosteroids (such as prednisone), lithium, and “water pills” may all interact with this medication (diuretics such as furosemide).

3. Panadol
Caplets

Caplets are oval in shape and film-coated, which makes them easier to swallow and eliminates the harsh aftertaste. Each caplet contains 173mg of sodium, which should be considered by people on a medically prescribed reduced sodium diet.

How To Consume

Caplets should be placed in the mouth and swallowed with water.

Dosage

Adults (including the elderly) and children over the age of twelve: 1 or 2 capsules

How Frequent?

As needed, every 4-6 hours; do not exceed 8 caplets in 24 hours.

Children under the age of 12 years are not recommended to consume panadol.