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NSAIDs vs. Tylenol

This article was originally published in The Tan Sheet

Executive Summary

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are superior to acetaminophen for improving knee and hip pain in people with osteoarthritis, a review published in The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews finds. Tanveer Towheed, MD, Queen's University, Ontario, et al., analyzed 15 randomized controlled trials gleaned from a search of databases including MEDLINE and EMBASE; the studies dated from 1994 to July 2005 and lasted an average of six weeks. Researchers reviewed data on almost 6,000 people with osteoarthritis who took 4,000 mg of acetaminophen (McNeil's Tylenol) per day with those who took placebo or NSAID. Subjects who took NSAIDs reported lower levels of pain and increased movement; "in osteoarthritis subjects with moderate-to-severe levels of pain, NSAIDs appear to be more effective than acetaminophen," Towheed et al. state...

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