Snippet from the article:
During the last decade, more than 1,500 Americans died after accidentally taking too much of a drug renowned for its safety: acetaminophen, one of the nation’s most popular pain relievers. Acetaminophen â€“ the active ingredient in Tylenol â€“ is considered safe when taken at recommended doses. Tens of millions of people use it weekly with no ill effect. But in larger amounts, especially in combination with alcohol, the drug can damage or even destroy the liver.
Davy Baumle, a slender 12-year-old who loved to ride his dirt bike through the woods of southern Illinois, died from acetaminophen poisoning. So did tiny five-month-old Brianna Hutto. So did Marcus Trunk, a strapping 23-year-old construction worker from Philadelphia.
The toll does not have to be so high.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has long been aware of studies showing the risks of acetaminophen â€“ in particular, that the margin between the amount that helps and the amount that can cause serious harm is smaller than for other pain relievers. So, too, has McNeil Consumer Healthcare, the unit of Johnson & Johnson that has built Tylenol into a billion-dollar brand and the leader in acetaminophen sales.
Read the rest — Use Only as Directed
This is a really informative and lengthy article you should read if you have some spare time. In a nutshell, the article says — the FDA isn’t perfect, around 150 people die every year from Tylenol misuse, and restrictions exist in many countries that aim to prevent overdose.