Yet a new study reported states that giving Tylenol to reduce the side effects after a vaccination lowers the effectiveness of the vaccination itself.
"Oct. 16 (Bloomberg) -- Children who get Tylenol and other brands of the painkiller paracetamol after vaccination to avoid a high fever aren’t as well protected as those who don’t, a study found.
Babies who took paracetamol, also known as acetaminophen, right after a shot had less fever but also showed a lower immune response, possibly because the drug reduced the inflammation that may favor interactions between immune cells, according to research published in the medical journal The Lancet.
Using the painkiller, also sold under the brands Calpol in the U.K. and Anacin in the U.S., to prevent fever after vaccination “has become routine practice and is even recommended in some countries,” wrote the researchers, led by Roman Prymula of the University of Defence in Hradec Kralove, the Czech Republic.
Prymula and his colleagues studied 459 healthy babies divided in two groups. One group received three doses of paracetamol after vaccination and the other didn’t. The researchers had two goals: to gauge how much fever the children had and how well immunized they were after the initial vaccine and the booster shot.
The children were vaccinated against diphtheria, tetanus, poliomyelitis, hepatitis B, whooping cough, diarrhea-causing rotaviruses and Haemophilus influenzae type B, a bacterium that can cause pneumonia and meningitis.
Forty-two percent of the children who got paracetamol after the first shot had a fever of 38 degrees Celsius (100.4 degrees Fahrenheit) or above, compared with 66 percent of those who didn’t, the study showed. High fever was rare in both groups. The immune response of the painkiller group, measured by the concentration of antibodies in their blood, was “significantly lower,” the researchers wrote. (Bloomberg)
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