Thanks so much for posting this, Dr. Fudin. As an Ehlers-Danlos patient with a keen interest in science, it frustrates me when people can’t get their facts right. If Vicodin is the same thing as heroin, then we might as well say that Maxalt (rizatriptan benzoate) is the same thing as a tricyclic antidepressant because both can contribute to serotonin syndrome. The website for the PBS documentary “The Botany of Desire” outlined the chemical differences between different kinds of opiates quite clearly; interested readers might want to check it out. (I can’t find a link, though.) I have never taken hydrocodone, but I used to use Tylenol w/ codeine in the past for acute pain. Now that I live in New York, I can’t even get a prescription for that. As a result, I’ve had to make a prescription for 20 Tylenol 3 stretch over the course of a year and a half. Some people would be gracious and say that they would never wish their pain on their worst enemy, but if my enemy worked for the FDA, I certainly would. Maybe it would provoke a change of perspective. Thank you for your advocacy.
The preservative benzyl alcohol has been associated with serious adverse events, including the "gasping syndrome", and death in pediatric patients. Although normal therapeutic doses of this product ordinarily deliver amounts of benzyl alcohol that are substantially lower than those reported in association with the "gasping syndrome", the minimum amount of benzyl alcohol at which toxicity may occur is not known. The risk of benzyl alcohol toxicity depends on the quantity administered and the liver and kidneys' capacity to detoxify the chemical. Premature and low-birth weight infants may be more likely to develop toxicity.
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