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Dublin: 13°C Tuesday 11 May 2021

Infants who take paracetamol more likely to develop asthma

Study from New Zealand concludes that “liberally” giving products containing paracetamol given to children may have serious side-effects.

A CHILD WHO is given paracetamol before the age of 15 months is twice as likely to develop asthma by the age of six than one who is not given a paracetamol product.

Professor Julian Crane of Otago University in Wellington, New Zealand, told Reuters that his research into the effects of paracetamol use on young children showed that the medicine was given “quite liberally” to them.

His report, which appeared in Clinical and Experimental Allergy journal, is based on a study carried out among infants and five to six-year-olds in Christchurch, New Zealand. Prof Crane said:

The major finding is that children who used paracetamol before the age of 15 months (90 per cent) were more than three times as likely to become sensitised to allergens and twice as likely to develop symptoms of asthma at six years old than children not using paracetamol.

He also said that the evidence was “not completely clear-cut” and that further clinical trials would be needed to clarify how common medication containing paracetamol should be used by children.

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