Did You Suffer Side Effects of Tylenol?

Scientific research has found that children born to women who take Tylenol (acetaminophen) during pregnancy may be significantly more likely to develop autism spectrum disorder (ASD) or attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in childhood.

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Tylenol Lawsuits

Scientific research has found that children born to women who take Tylenol (acetaminophen) during pregnancy may be significantly more likely to develop autism spectrum disorder (ASD) or attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in childhood.

Since its introduction nearly 70 years ago, Tylenol has become one of the best-selling pain-relieving medications in all of North America. The brand name Tylenol (acetaminophen) is owned by McNeil Laboratories, which is a subsidiary of pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson. Although McNeil originally marketed Tylenol Elixir to children, the medication quickly became popular among adults and children alike and is now commonly used over the counter to treat pain, fever, cold, cough, flu, and allergy symptoms. Despite its reputation as a safe medication for the whole family, Tylenol has become the subject of significant scrutiny in recent years, due to the potential for Tylenol side effects to occur. 

Recent studies have raised serious concerns about Tylenol’s potential link to autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) when taken during pregnancy, which has led to a growing number of lawsuits against its manufacturers. If you took Tylenol while pregnant to relieve pain or reduce fever and your child has been diagnosed with autism, ADHD, or another serious side effect, fill out the form or call our consumer advocates right away to discuss your options.

Tylenol Alternatives for Pain Relief

As consumers become aware of the potential for Tylenol to possibly increase the risk of autism and/or ADHD in children exposed in utero, more and more pregnant women are turning to alternative treatment methods to reduce fever, treat coughs and colds, and relieve minor head and back pain, rather than exposing themselves and their children to alleged Tylenol side effects. Some common natural or holistic alternatives to Tylenol for pain relief include the following:

    • Capsaicin – Derived from hot chili peppers, topical capsaicin may be a helpful method of relieving pain for some people. It works by depleting the compound that conveys the pain sensation from the peripheral to the central nervous system.
    • Ginger – Ginger extract contains phytochemicals, which can stop inflammation and may therefore help relieve joint and muscle pain in some people.
    • Turmeric – Turmeric is a spice that can be used to relieve heartburn, inflammation, and pain from arthritis.
    • Acupuncture – Acupuncture is believed to decrease pain by promoting the release of chemicals called endorphins that block the sensation of pain.
    • Massage and/or chiropractic treatment – Chiropractic treatment is the most common non-surgical method of relief for back pain and massage is becoming more and more popular among people suffering from chronic neck and back problems.
    • Nutritional supplements – There is some evidence indicating that nutritional supplements like glucosamine, chondroitin, and fish oils may be beneficial for pain relief.

What is Tylenol?

Tylenol (acetaminophen) is one of the best-selling medications in the world, commonly used over the counter as a treatment for mild to moderate pain, fever, coughs, colds, and the flu. The active ingredient in Tylenol, acetaminophen, is also found in more than 600 other medications that are available over the counter or in prescription-strength formulations, including Benadryl, Excedrin, Dayquil, Theraflu, Robitussin, Percocet, and Vicodin. Tylenol was initially approved by the FDA in 1951, and because it has been on the market in the United States for more than six decades, most people assume that the pain reliever is safe to use and does not carry any risk of dangerous side effects. However, recent reports have tied acetaminophen (Tylenol) to a possible increased risk of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and/or attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children when used during pregnancy.

Alleged Side Effects Leading to a Tylenol Injury Lawsuit

Tylenol has long been regarded as a safe and effective pain reliever, especially during pregnancy. However, the alleged side effects of Tylenol have led to a surge in lawsuits against its manufacturers. Consumers may be shocked to learn that several studies published in recent years have established a plausible connection between using acetaminophen (Tylenol) while pregnant and the development of autism and/or ADHD during childhood. A growing number of families nationwide are now pursuing legal claims against Johnson & Johnson and other acetaminophen manufacturers and retailers, alleging that their children’s diagnosis of autism or ADHD was caused by Tylenol or acetaminophen use and could have been avoided had consumers been properly warned about this potential side effect risk.

Another concern related to Tylenol use is the potential risk of liver failure, which research shows can occur as a result of a one-time unintentional acetaminophen overdose. Experts have warned that even healthy people taking Tylenol as recommended may be at risk for life-threatening Tylenol side effects like overdose and liver failure. Acetaminophen is metabolized in the liver, which results in a by-product that can damage the liver. In most cases, this by-product is converted into a harmless substance by a certain antioxidant in the body. However, taking large doses of Tylenol can cause this antioxidant to become overwhelmed, potentially resulting in irreversible damage to liver cells indicative of liver failure. Common symptoms of liver failure include jaundice, swollen abdomen, bleeding easily, and sometimes even coma.

Link Between Tylenol and Autism, ADHD

For decades, pregnant women have been taking Tylenol to relieve pregnancy-related pain, mild fevers, and minor discomforts, including headaches and backaches. After all, Tylenol has long been regarded as safe for pregnant women and developing babies and it remains the most widely used medicine during pregnancy. As many as 65% of American women say they took Tylenol or another acetaminophen-containing medication while pregnant, many at their healthcare provider’s recommendation. Sadly, it appears that Tylenol may not be as safe as once believed, considering emerging research highlighting the possible fetal risks associated with maternal Tylenol use, including a potential increased risk of developing autism and/or ADHD in childhood. 

Numerous studies have suggested a potential link between Tylenol use during pregnancy and the increased risk of autism and ADHD in children. While the exact mechanism behind this association is not fully understood, researchers have found consistent evidence supporting this connection. A meta-analysis of seven studies involving over 132,000 pairs of mothers and children revealed a 20% higher risk of autism and a 30% higher risk of ADHD in children exposed to prolonged acetaminophen during fetal development. It is important to note that these studies do not prove causation. However, the consistent findings across multiple studies have raised concerns and prompted further investigations into the potential risks of Tylenol use during pregnancy.

Lawsuits Against Tylenol for Autism/ADHD

June 2022 – A mother in Washington state files one of the first Tylenol ADHD lawsuits against Walmart on behalf of her minor daughters, both of whom she alleges suffered side effects of acetaminophen use during pregnancy. “Increasing experimental and epidemiological research shows that prenatal exposure to [acetaminophen] alters fetal development, which significantly increases the risks of neurodevelopmental disorders, including but not limited to, ASD and ADHD,” her lawsuit states. According to the claim, both of her daughters have developed ADHD and one was being tested for autism at the time the complaint was filed. 

October 2022 – The Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) creates an acetaminophen ASD/ADHD multidistrict litigation (MDL) in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, stating that all Tylenol autism lawsuits filed in federal courts nationwide will be transferred there.

January 2023 – A Tylenol lawsuit filed against CVS Pharmacy, Walgreens, and Walmart alleges that the defendants were negligent in failing to warn the plaintiff or her healthcare providers about the potential link between acetaminophen use during pregnancy and autism. 

January 2023 – The federal judge overseeing the Tylenol autism and ADHD litigation orders plaintiffs to submit an example of a warning that could have been added to the acetaminophen label informing users about the potential fetal risks of using Tylenol during pregnancy

February 2023 – In an attempt to avoid liability for Tylenol autism and ADHD claims, Johnson & Johnson files a motion to dismiss all federal Tylenol lawsuits. The healthcare giant claims in the motion that failure to warn claims are preempted by federal law.

April 2023 – The Tylenol MDL judge rejects Johnson & Johnson’s motion, finding that the manufacturer could have added warnings about the link between maternal Tylenol use and possible injury to the fetus without violating federal law.

May 2023 – Johnson & Johnson files a motion for certification of an interlocutory appeal, asking a higher court to review the matter. 

June 2023 – To date, there are more than 130 acetaminophen ASD/ADHD lawsuits pending in the federal MDL in New York.

FDA and Tylenol Side Effects

January 2015 – In light of growing concerns about the safety of prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) pain medicines taken by pregnant women, the FDA warns that “the use of pain medicines during pregnancy should be carefully considered.” The agency also urges pregnant women to “always discuss all medicines with their health care professionals before using them.”  

April 2023 – The federal judge presiding over the acetaminophen autism/ADHD MDL asks the FDA to review the proposed acetaminophen pregnancy warning presented by the plaintiffs and submit comments by July 2023.

Tylenol Side Effect Studies

February 2014 – A study published in JAMA Pediatrics indicates that women who use Tylenol (acetaminophen) during pregnancy may have a higher risk of giving birth to a baby with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), or a brain and behavior disability called hyperkinetic disorder (HKD). April 2018 – According to a meta-analysis of 132,738 mother-child pairs published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, “Acetaminophen use during pregnancy is associated with an increased risk for ADHD, ASD, and hyperactivity symptoms.” February 2020 – A study funded by the National Institutes of Health analyzes data from the Boston Birth Cohort study. Researchers find that children with the highest exposure to acetaminophen in the womb were approximately three times more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD or autism spectrum disorder later in childhood. May 2021 – A meta-analysis of six European population-based cohorts finds that children born to women who took Tylenol while pregnant were 19% more likely to develop autism and 21% more likely to develop ADHD.  September 2021 – A Consensus Statement published in Nature Reviews Endocrinology calls for precautionary action in light of research suggesting that “prenatal exposure to APAP [acetaminophen] might alter fetal development, which could increase the risks of some neurodevelopmental, reproductive and urogenital disorders.”

Why We Think Manufacturers Should Be Held Liable for Acetaminophen Side Effects

In addition to Tylenol, acetaminophen can be found in more than 600 prescription and over-the-counter medications, and the pain reliever has generated more than $1 billion a year for McNeil Laboratories and its parent company, Johnson & Johnson. This is despite the potential connection studies have drawn between the risk of autism spectrum disorder or attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder from Tylenol use in pregnancy. According to allegations raised in the growing Tylenol litigation, plaintiffs who have suffered side effects potentially caused by acetaminophen accuse Johnson & Johnson and other manufacturers/retailers of the following:

  • Manufacturing a defective medication and selling it to consumers
  • Failing to provide adequate warnings about the alleged risk of autism/ADHD from Tylenol use
  • Allowing consumers to believe for years that Tylenol was safe for regular use, including during pregnancy
  • Knowing about the potential for Tylenol to cause and autism/ADHD side effects, but withholding this crucial information from the public

Non Tylenol Lawsuit Drug Topics

Tylenol claim?

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Fighting For The People

What should you do? If your child has been diagnosed with autism, ADHD, or another serious side effect, you should contact an attorney as soon as possible to discuss filing a Tylenol lawsuit.

Start Your Claim Now!

The lawsuits against Tylenol manufacturers highlight the belief that they should be held liable for the alleged side effects associated with their product. Manufacturers have a responsibility to provide accurate information and warnings about the potential risks of their medications. Failure to do so can result in harm to consumers and subsequent legal action. Unfortunately, many consumers remain unaware of the potential risk of autism/ADHD in children exposed to acetaminophen (Tylenol) in pregnancy, even in recommended doses. 

If you or a loved one has suffered an alleged Tylenol side effect like autism or ADHD, contact a reputable Tylenol attorney today to discuss your options for legal recourse. You may be entitled to financial compensation for your injuries, medical expenses, and pain and suffering, which you can pursue by filing a Tylenol lawsuit. By hiring a Tylenol lawyer to represent your claim, you can protect your legal rights and pursue the compensation you and your loved ones deserve.

Study: Higher risk of ADHD or HKD with Tylenol exposure in pregnancy

A study published in JAMA Pediatrics indicates that women who use Tylenol (acetaminophen) during pregnancy may have a higher risk of giving birth to a baby with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), or a brain and behavior disability called hyperkinetic disorder (HKD).

February 2014

Acetaminophen use in pregnancy is linked to ADHD, ASD, and hyperactivity

According to a meta-analysis of 132,738 mother-child pairs published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, “Acetaminophen use during pregnancy is associated with an increased risk for ADHD, ASD, and hyperactivity symptoms.”

April 2018

National Institutes of Health analyzes data from Boston Birth Cohort study

A study funded by the National Institutes of Health analyzes data from the Boston Birth Cohort study. Researchers find that children with the highest exposure to acetaminophen in the womb were approximately three times more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD or autism spectrum disorder later in childhood.Read MoreFebruary 2020

Meta-analysis: 19% increased risk of autism and 21% increased risk of ADHD

A meta-analysis of six European population-based cohorts finds that children born to women who took Tylenol while pregnant were 19% more likely to develop autism and 21% more likely to develop ADHD.

May 2021

Consensus Statement: A Call for Precautionary Action

A Consensus Statement published in Nature Reviews Endocrinology calls for precautionary action in light of research suggesting that “prenatal exposure to APAP [acetaminophen] might alter fetal development, which could increase the risks of some neurodevelopmental, reproductive and urogenital disorders.”September 2021
By submitting this form, you confirm that you have read and agreed to Select Justice, LLC, LeadClient, Inc., or a law firm may contact you about their services at your above phone number even if it is on a National or State Do Not Call List. Calls / texts may employ automated dialing technology and prerecorded / artificial voice messages and email. I understand my consent is not a condition of any purchase.

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