Difference between Panadol and Aspirin

Key difference: Panadol, i.e. paracetamol, is a non-narcotic painkiller which is essentially used to ease mild to moderate pain from headaches, toothache, muscle and joint pains and period pains. It can also be used for relieving the symptoms of allergies, cold, cough, and flu. Aspirin is a non-narcotic inflammatory drug, which can be used to relieve pain and inflammation caused by rheumatic and muscular pain, sprains, backache, headache, sore throat, toothache, and period pain.

Both Panadol and aspirin act as pain relievers and fever reducers that are available over the counter. Panadol is the brand name for paracetamol or acetaminophen as owned and marketed by GlaxoSmithKline. Aspirin, on the other hand, is the generic name for acetylsalicylic acid, a salicylate drug, which was first isolated by Bayer. Hence in some countries, the name aspirin is trademarked by Bayer.

Panadol, i.e. paracetamol, is a non-narcotic painkiller which is essentially used to ease mild to moderate pain from headaches, toothache, muscle and joint pains and period pains. It can also be used for relieving the symptoms of allergies, cold, cough, and flu. There are a number of side-effects that can affect somebody due to over dosage or frequent use. However, paracetamol is considered safe for use in adults and children, as its side effects are relatively less than other painkillers. It is also considered relatively safe to pair paracetamol with other medications.

Aspirin is a non-narcotic inflammatory drug, which can be used to relieve pain and inflammation caused by rheumatic and muscular pain, sprains, backache, headache, sore throat, toothache, and period pain. It can also be used to treat flu-like symptoms and reduce fever in adults. In low doses, it can be used to thin the blood, and hence prevent heart attacks or strokes. However, aspirin can have a number of side effects when over dosed or used frequently, especially for someone suffering with medical conditions, such as high blood pressure, bleeding disorders, asthma, stomach ulcers, and liver and kidney disease. Also, it does not mix well with other medicines, vitamins, herbals, or dietary supplements.

The main difference between aspirin and paracetamol is that aspirin reduces inflammation and swelling, in addition to reducing pain and fever. So, aspirin is a better option for conditions where inflammation and swelling occurs in addition to pain, such as arthritis, toothache, period pain and sore throat. However, experts recommend that people first use paracetamol, as it is gentler. It is also considered a better option for children and teenagers, as well as for people who have or had stomach ulcers.

A detailed comparison between Panadol and Aspirin:

 

Panadol

Aspirin

Generic Name

Acetaminophen (Paracetamol)

Acetylsalicylic Acid

Owned by

GlaxoSmithKline

Is an alternate generic name; in some countries owned by Bayer

Availability

Over the counter

Over the counter

Effective for 

Reducing pain, reducing fever, relieving the symptoms of allergies, cold, cough, and flu.

Treatment of a number of conditions, including fever, pain, rheumatic fever, and inflammatory diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, pericarditis, and Kawasaki disease. Lower doses of aspirin have also shown to reduce the risk of death from a heart attack, or the risk of stroke in some circumstances.

Dosage

500mg -1g every four to six hours, maximum 4g daily.  Adults and children older than 12 - 1-2 tablets every 4 hours as needed. Should not exceed 8 tablets in 24 hours. Should not be taken with alcohol.

300-900 mg every four to six hours, maximum 4g daily.   For adults, doses of 1-2 tablets are taken four times a day for fever or arthritis.

Effects

Lowers fever and reduces aches and pains. Does not reduce inflammation. Works on nerve cells. Safer for children.

As an analgesic to relieve minor aches and pains, as an antipyretic to reduce fever, and as an anti-inflammatory medication.

Ill Effects / Side Effects

Fewer side effects. Large doses can cause stomach bleeding, renal failure, kidney or liver damage. Side effects may be more likely in chronic alcoholics or patients with liver damage. Chronic users may have a higher risk of developing blood cancer.

Likely to cause gastrointestinal bleeding, gastrointestinal ulcers, inhibits the kidneys' ability to excrete uric acid, linked with Reye's syndrome, can induce angioedema (swelling of skin tissues), and an increased risk of cerebral microbleeds. High-dose, long-term use of aspirin can cause iron deficiency anemia and can cause liver toxicity. Large doses of salicylate, a metabolite of aspirin, have been proposed to cause tinnitus. For a small number of people, taking aspirin can result in symptoms resembling an allergic reaction, including hives, swelling and headache.

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