My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Ask Your Question

WebMD Answers

120 Characters remaining
120 Characters remaining
  • First, try and keep your question as short as possible.
  • Include specific words that will help us identify questions that may already have your answer.
  • If you don't find your answer, you can post your question to WebMD Experts and Contributors.


Posted: | Report This Report Question |

What's the difference between acetaminophen and ibuprofen, and what are the dangers of each?

Related Topics: Ibuprofen, Acetaminophen

Answers From Experts & Organizations (1)

American Pharmacists Association
423 Answers
9,534 Helpful Votes

Acetaminophen is used more as a fever reducer and for pain. Ibuprofen, which is also known as Motrin or Advil, can be used for pain that's caused by inflammation. So the theory is, is that, if the area is inflamed, that's really what's causing the pain.

Acetaminophen or Tylenol is also referred to as APAP in some formulations. You want to be careful.

You want to make sure that you don't exceed more than 4,000 milligrams a day for an adult. If you are an elderly person, you don't want to exceed 2,000 milligrams a day, and you would want to avoid things like alcohol.

They are noticing that there have been some challenges with acetaminophen in the cases of people taking too much of it. They weren't aware that they were taking prescription medications with acetaminophen in it. So you want to talk to your pharmacist first before you consider choosing these products.

On the Advil/Motrin side, once again, you don't want to drink alcohol with them.

It really helps create nausea. It could upset the stomach. If you have an ulcer, it's not recommended. If you have asthma, it's not recommended either, because ibuprofen is a sister to aspirin and it could trigger an asthma attack. That's really, some people are very sensitive to this class, and that's why they shouldn't be taking it.

So once again, you want to come to the pharmacy, you want to ask for the pharmacist. You want to come with your medication list, show us what you are taking, and then tell us what are your symptoms.

In some cases, if you have had a pain for a while, we might refer you to a doctor or a healthcare provider to have it further evaluated.

This answer should not be considered medical advice...down arrowThis answer should not be considered medical advice and should not take the place of a doctor’s visit. Please see the bottom of the page for more information or visit our Terms and Conditions.up arrow

| Report This Report Answer

Was this helpful?


Thanks for your feedback.

766 of 999 found this helpful
Read the Original Article: WebMD Ask the Pharmacist: Bug Bites, Burns, First Aid