SelfCare Focus: a selection of newly published papers on self-care from the worldwide literature. 4. A population-based study of risk perceptions of paracetamol use among Swedes-with a special focus on young adults

A population-based study of risk perceptions of paracetamol use among Swedes-with a special focus on young adults.

By: Hakonsen H and Hedenrud T.

Pharmacoepidemiology and Drug Safety 2017; 26: 992-97.

Summary: This report investigated the risk perceptions of paracetamol use with a special focus on young adults. 3120 persons answered the full questionnaire. Most respondents (70.5%) reported use of paracetamol in the 3 months prior to the study. Nine in 10 were OTC paracetamol users. A total of 14.2% thought paracetamol was completely harmless to use, while 54.3% indicated risks associated with use even when following the dosing instructions. One third disagreed that it is less risky to use paracetamol compared with NSAIDs. Three-quarters identified liver damage as a potential consequence of exceeding the recommended maximum daily dose. The likelihood of a high-risk perception was higher in women compared with men, and increased with age. Participants aged 18 to 25 years had the same ability to identify risks of overdose as did those aged 26 to 65, but expressed more careless attitudes towards use.

Abstract.

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