The Great Tylenol Scare and Coverup (1955- 2019)

Liver and Onions

By annspinwall and Steve Kelly

The (Extra Strength) Tylenol murders of September,1982 remains one of the great unsolved crimes in U.S. history.  The story we are supposed to believe is that 7 random individuals died after purchasing and consuming Tylenol deliberately dosed with cyanide.  Store shelves were not safe.  Panic in the marketplace led to a massive, nationwide (31 million bottles of capsules) recall by Tylenol manufacturer, Johnson & Johnson.  New, federal legislation initiated mandatory “anti-tampering” packaging, which magically gained J&J even greater market share in a few short weeks after the incident.  Excellent crisis management, or premeditated PR stunt? Was J&J in on it? We’ll never know for sure.

Here’s what we do know.  Tylenol has long been promoted as a “safe” alternative to aspirin and/or ibuprofen and other NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs).  Johnson & Johnson says so on the tv, and in magazines piled high at MDs’ offices throughout the world, so it must be true. 

Propaganda!   It works. 

Tylenol was first introduced in the U.S. as prescription-only “Children’s Tylenol Elixer” by McNeil Laboratories. J&J bought McNeil Labs in 1959, and was selling Tylenol without a prescription one year later.

“Acetaminophen (N-acetyl-para-aminophenol, APAP or paracetamol) is the most widely used over-the-counter and prescription painkiller in the world. While safe at therapeutic doses of up to 4 grams per day for adults, acetaminophen overdoses, either accidental or intentional, are the leading cause of acute liver failure in the United States, accounting for some 56,000 emergency room visits, 2,600 hospitalizations and nearly 500 deaths annually.”

Other research has now shown us a smoking gun of leaky gut causation from pain killers.  Sure, the pain went away….   But “my doctor said…”                                                                                  

The Oxford Text of Nephrology said that smoking and NSAIDs were the leading cause of kidney failure.  They blamed the (pain-killer) drugs because they always cause bleeding.  It doesn’t matter if the aspirin is enteric coated or not.  That just protects the stomach.  Everything else that it touches after that bleeds. 

Your gut, or your liver?  Acetaminophen may be easier on the stomach than NSAIDs, but it can cause liver damage, or death, if you take more than the recommended maximum dose.  And if you drink alcohol with pain-killers your risk increases exponentially.                             

Tylenol is not an NSAID.  NSAIDs all cause intestinal perforation.  You may think you have a stomach ulcer.  Your doctor may have even diagnosed you with a stomach ulcer.  You could both be wrong.

“Patients who regularly take nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) have and increased risk for small-intestinal mucosal ulceration and bleeding, which may present as anemia of undetermined gastrointestinal origin or protein loss.”  

“Small-bowel injury was seen in 71% of NSAID users compared with 10% of controls.”

“It is now recognized that chronic blood-loss anemia and occult blood loss among NSAID users cannot all be attributed to gastroduodenal (relating to, or connecting the stomach and the duodenum) lesions, suggesting that damage to the small intestine is a common event.” 

NSAIDs are a class of drugs generally used to treat inflammation, mild to moderate pain, and fever. Examples of the most common NSAIDs include: aspirin salsalate (Amigesic), diflunisal (Dolobid), ibuprofen (Motrin), ketoprofen (Orudis), nabumetone (Relafen), piroxicam (Feldene), naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn,) diclofenac (Voltaren), indomethacin (Indocin), sulindac (Clinoril), tolmetin (Tolectin), etodolac (Lodine), ketorolac (Toradol), oxaprozin (Daypro), celecoxib (Celebrex).

It turns out that the so-called safe alternative – Tylenol – harbors numerous, serious toxicity problems that have gone largely unreported or underreported.  While is now recognized that acetaminophen – Tylenol has been available since the 1950s – may be highly toxic when consumed with alcohol or when a person is fasting, many other disorders of unknown origin may be triggered by drug interaction, diet, or cumulative liver damage.  More research is needed to tease out atypical detoxification reactions that may adversely affect hepatic, renal, cardiovascular, neurological endocrine, or immune systems function. That’s a whole lot of “uncharted territory” when you consider how widespread Tylenol use is world-wide.

Even the Wall Street has reported on the risks of consuming acetaminophen-containing, over-the-counter medications along with alcohol or when not consuming an adequate diet.

“Opinions vary about what constitutes a safe level. Many experts agree that a daily dose of 7,000 mg can cause severe liver damage in an adult. But about 10% of the acetaminophen-related deaths have occurred at levels between 2,000 mg and 4,000 mg. People who drink three or more alcoholic beverages a day or have liver disease are particularly vulnerable.

“The absence of gastrointestinal toxicity is responsible for the widespread perception that Tylenol is safer. In some ways it is, but in others, it is not. It may leave your stomach alone, but not your liver.” 

“Dr. Hausknecht’s statistics may seem puzzling. How can there be 50,000 emergency room visits and 25,000 hospitalizations, yet only 450 deaths per year?  This is because, when treated in time, irreversible liver damage from an acute overdose of acetaminophen can be prevented. There is an antidote called N-acetylcysteine. But the danger of the drug is not only from acute doses. Both acute and chronic use of acetaminophen can lead to permanent liver damage, not because acetaminophen itself is toxic, but because the liver converts it into something that is (Figure 1), sealing its own fate in the process.”   It’s not the acetaminophen itself, but its oxidation by liver enzymes that forms N-acetylbenzoquinoneimine, toxic molecule that irreversibly “attacks” various proteins in the liver.                                                                                                                               T

Tylenol PM, and other over-the-counter medications have anticholinergic (blocks the neurotransmitter acetylcholine) effects that your doctor may not recognize as the cause of memory loss or cognitive disfunction.

“Many people are unaware that dozens of painkillers, antihistamines and psychiatric medications — from drugstore staples to popular antidepressants — can adversely affect brain function, mostly in the elderly. Regular use of multiple medications that have this effect has been linked to cognitive impairment and memory loss. Called anticholinergics, the drugs block the action of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, sometimes as a direct action, but often as a side effect. Acetylcholine is a chemical messenger with a range of functions in the body, memory production and cognitive function among them. The difficulty for patients is that the effect of anticholinergic drugs is cumulative.”

“Keep in mind that many over-the-counter drugs, including allergy medications, antihistamines and Tylenol PM, have anticholinergic effects.”

Tylenol messes with your brain too!  So, let me get right to the “bottom line” on this bonus side-effect: “In summary, our research is the first to show that the popular physical painkiller acetaminophen can reduce empathy to the pain of others.”  “Quite literally, acetaminophen reduces one’s ability to feel another’s pain.”  Apparently, former Pres. Bill Clinton wasn’t hooked on Tylenol, since one of his oft-repeated, seldom-believed one-liners was: “I feel your pain.”  But, oh, there’s more.

One last piece of evidence:

“Acetaminophen, sold under the brand name Tylenol, among others, may be among the most dangerous medicines on the market.  I’m sure this comes as a surprise to most of you, as virtually every single household keeps a bottle on hand for the occasional ache and pain, and doesn’t think twice about it.”  – Dr. Mercola

The link between acetaminophen and serious skin reactions is generally kept under wraps by the AMA and MSM.  After over 100 cases of serious skin reactions, 76 hospitalizations, and 12 reported deaths, the FDA finally required a “warning” on prescription acetaminophen products.  “If you’ve ever had a skin reaction when taking acetaminophen, don’t take the drug again.”  – FDA (Food and Drug Admin.)

There is so much more, but I must tootle along.  It’s always best to do your own research on anything that goes into your mouth, especially when there is so much readily-available information, no further away than our fingertips.

Stay healthy good folks at POM.  

29 thoughts on “The Great Tylenol Scare and Coverup (1955- 2019)

  1. Steve…fantastic job, thank you so much for expanding on my research and writing a more extensive article….much appreciated! The liver and onion pic is a nice touch too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I haven’t touched the stuff for 3 years…was taking about 225 capsules a month for headaches….the headaches kept getting worse but I was worried I was taking too much Tylenol so I checked with my primary care doctor and she said the amount was OK….anyway, stopped taking because of my research and the headaches went away. Honestly, I haven’t had a headache since I stopped taking this crap!!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Everything I needed to know about medicine I learned from the Three Stooges: Doctor! Doctor! It HURTS when I do THIS!
        Then don’t DO THAT!
        an amazing story confirming Opposite Day. It is 100% in alignment with what we uncovered for those with intractable nerve pain that is caused by herpes infections. So people get caught in the opioid epidemic which does what? activates the opioid receptor that does what? creates cell permissivity to the herpes virus. That does what? creates more pain. That does what? makes the victim grab for more opioids. The thing that I haven’t figured out just yet is if we have the controllers to blame for this kind of elaborate trap or the virus that runs the controllers or the plant that seems to have a mind of its own because someone has to cultivate the opium to get the drug to hook the victims that lived in the shoe that Jack built. what a strange whirled.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Stellar work again Steve. If ever I need tent pegs hammered into the ground with a sledge, it will be you that I will tell: When I nod my head – hit it!


    1. Hi Katy,

      You and you colleague have done some significant investigation. I sped read your PDF to get the gist of it. I have uncovered some data on acetaminophen that shows this monster to be worse than I could have imagined and will be sharing it with Steven and Ann soon. The comparison in your study of ibuprofen (NSAID) with tylenol (ANILINE) gave an interesting and consistent insight to possible mechanisms of the installation of vaccine-induced disease (i.e. neurological damage improperly given the blanket of autism). Although they are called analgesics (references will follow in the material I send to the dynamic duo) all sources say that tylenol is a weak analgesic so it is used as an antipyretic. That is important because like with measles infection: if you stop the progression of natural measles never allowing it to get to the rash stage it basically embeds the disease and prions (the desired outcome of medicine) rather than letting the entire immune cascade flow to its conclusion, thus putting the victim at higher risk of things like cancer later in life. References abound on the oncolytic nature of measles virus and they will be provided later as I am so busy I can’t see straight or sideways. Therefore, since measles virus is also implicated in chronic brain inflammation in autism, we can presume that the use of ANTIPYRETICS like acetaminophen destroy that immune cascade setting up a permanent infection in the entire body thus contributing to the austim ‘spectrum’. The ear infections brought me back to observations in 1923 that Scarletina (Group A Strep) can competitively clear Diphtheria from the nose and throat but CANNOT clear it from the ear. This takes us into several directions with diphtheria (or viruses that no one probably cultured for) in the ear have easy access to the brain; coupled with the Strep association in PANDAS so as not to diminish the role of tonsils and sinuses in the access to the brain. A confounding variable with Vitamin D associations and the prevalence of ‘autism’ would be lyme & coinfections since the borellia spirochete has this insidious ability to take vitamin D, give it a molecular tweak and make it an anti-immune compound. Given that lyme is now a global pandemic it is one of those foundational considerations with which I evaluate all other factors. Cheers.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I am now 68 years old, and I think I realized in my 20s that aspirin or pain reliefers of all kinds simply did not work. So I have never taken them. We did give our children aspirin when they had high fevers. But I have never believed that any OTC medication has any value. So I have built up great immunity! I don’t take any of this stuff, never have.

    I do know some people who are antidote-minded … “what to do for it?” Have a headache? What to take? Loose bowels? What to take? Sinus headache? What to take? They seem to think there is a pill for every problem. Some of those conditions are really uncomfortable, but our natural functions take care of most everything. No pills? No problem!


  4. even though both authors don’t like me, I’ll try to tell, what my experience is. There is two kinds of pain, the one caused by a disturbance in the body, when you hurt yourself, etc. This one is necessary for the healing process. Stopping this pain will delay the healing. The other kind of pain is when you only think that you have pain. It feels as real as the first one, but there is no reason for it except your brain invents it. Think phantom pain after you’ve lost a part of your body. The most of headache is of this category. There also is two kinds of painkillers, the first one stops the production of Prostaglandin, which is a messenger substance. Aspirin and Tylenol, which simply is an American brand of Paracetamol are of this kind. The other kind of painkillers are opiates and they disable the receptors in the brain. Fever is a side effect of cell splitting where damaged tissue is being repaired. Prostaglandin will make you not feel the pain anymore but also will not tell the cells to split and delay the healing. That’s why aspirin lowers fever. Opiates will disturb the communication between the brain and that damaged part of your body, which is why sometimes taking drugs of this kind first causes even more pain. The synchronicity is gone and things get out of control then. Tylenol is as dangerous as aspirin if taken in similar amounts. If you’re taking 225 painkillers a month like Ann did, then you’re in real trouble. This is such a horrible amount. I don’t think European doctors will support this that easily. Doctors are always eager to prescribe you something because that is the manifestation of their work. And we like to believe in a magic cure because it takes the responsibility from us. Just take the panacea and everything will be all right? No! Every healing must be done by your body and only by your own body. The only help you can get is in convincing yourself to strengthen your will to get better. Some therapist can really do that, some herbs can help you to relax, etc. That’s it. Everything begins in the brain. If you can pull yourself up, you will control the fake pain and you will deal with the real pain without painkillers. Actually the words give away everything: pain-killers, anti-biotics, etc. And at least its all poison and has to be dealt with as poison. If you don’t take any medicine you won’t get more sick. It is medicine itself which causes the most of the sickness around us. All those obese, water filled and hardly able to move people have a long medical history. They are victims of the medicine.


    1. I have to go along here … I have never been on top of things but have within me an anti-streak, as I like to be on my own and relying on myself. So take something harmless, deodorant … even in my twenties I saw that its sales were based on fear of smelling bad. I quit using it as I refused to let fear govern. For forty years since I have never had someone complain about my smell. Yes, if I am out camping and am several days without a shower, yuk. But a daily shower is all we need. If we sweat, well, it takes about 24 hours for the sweat to stink, so either shower or sleep alone.

      Pain killers … I never thought much about them, but just understood that they do not work. I have pain, like everyone, the most annoying sinus kind of stuff, which has not happpened in years. Those headaches are hard to bear. When I had knee surgery, the pain was intense and the drugs I was given did nothing for me. From all of this I conclude that i do not have my mind right. I do not know that pain killers are useful.

      I have watched people die. The pain of final illness is intense. How do we deal with it? Morphine. It is kind. It eases us out to the other side. This is one situation where modern medicine, operating in a hush-hush fashion, is doing some real good.


      1. some smell more than others, Mark. A colleague of mine showers every morning, takes fresh shirt and underwear every day and still starts to smell as soon as he starts to climb the stairs. If your kidneys don’t work properly, your skin will start to get rid of all the poison from the cellular processes. That’s what makes the sweat smell. On the other side, some small amounts of poison in deodorants won’t kill you so why don’t do that favor to others? If you don’t work in the office anymore, it doesn’t matter. But a longer meeting in a small room crowded with people can become very unpleasant.
        If you’re dying naturally, there won’t be any pain. Your power will left you and organs will stop to work. You won’t feel a thing. I’ve seen both kinds of death. What you described as final illness is the consequence of life long damage caused by medicine. Of course using morphine then can’t do any harm anymore, so why not? This is not comparable to taking pills to deal with daily pain caused by pills. It is up to everybody IMO. Nobody today can claim not to know any better.


        1. In my entire life I have only come across one person who naturally smelled bad, poor Wayne in grade school. Occasionally I had to sit next to him in church. For the rest of it, sales of deodorant are built on social insecurity. It can mask one smell with another, but I find the smell of deodorant itself offensive. It is the essense of advertising to market a product based on fear. That is all that is going on there. People don’t smell bad. They are just afraid they do because advertising got to them.

          Reminds me … when I first met my wife she invited a friend and I to come to her house for dinner at the end of a backpacking trip. We lived in different towns. We were a week in the wilderness and unshowered and unshaven, but that was no problem. We went to the Y before and cleaned up and put on fresh clothes. After the meal she and I gave her mother a ride home in my vehicle, which had all our clothing in it and which stunk like hell. I was embarrassed but my gal said no worry, as with age (her Mom was late eighties by that time) she had lost her abilities to smell. Just like your pronouncements above, I wonder now if my wife was pulling my chain there. Of course she could smell! She was just polite. I will have to ask her. She is sitting ten feet away.

          I hope you’re right about dying being painless, but wonder where you got that information. I am pretty sure that as we age our abilities to resist disease diminish, and that pain is involved in the exit process.


          1. When I was back there in High School, a teacher there stank so bad, it kinda hung in the air like the smell of fat from a McDonalds or KFC. He had halitosis also, which made it worse. We all dreaded going into his class and getting a word in our ear kinda thing, ecc. It later turned out he had cancer.
            There was a question on a quiz show last night which was Hershey bars smell like — A. Brussel Sprouts, B. (can’t recall) or C. Vomit , but the correct answer was C. (I bought a Hershey plain chocolate bar today and it smelt all right and tasted OK also.)

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          2. I remember when my grandmother died, we waited at her bed, she snored a little bit, was mostly sleeping, then everything went quiet and she stopped breathing. No pain. I also know cases where people just went to sleep one night and didn’t wake up. I know somebody who got diagnosed with breast cancer in her 50-s. She lived happily without any pain for the next 10 years, decided then to try chemo and died painfully less than a year later. This was a painful dying. I saw many pets dying from age. Cats and dogs. Our cat died not long ago. In the last weeks she stayed near the toilet and the food. Didn’t move much. Then she went to the toilet for the last time, was able to get out and then lost all strengths and slipped on the floor with all legs apart and died shortly after. Also no pain.
            The other thing is, you may live long enough to develop things like Alzheimer or simply not be able anymore to take care of yourself. I’m having a contingency plan for myself but won’t tell it here.


          3. Is there a Louise to drive over a cliff with your Thelma? That’s what my wife and I say … that we are going out together in that manner. I have sat bedside for my brothers at their deaths. With Tom, the oldest, a deeply religious man, I read scripture to him on the off chance that he could hear. As you say, he stopped breathing. He had leukemia. With Steve, he was deeply in pain when they put him under, a ruptured lower intestine, and they told him this was it, it was over, before they dosed him. He came around and asked for more, as it wasn’t working. 24 hours later I and others were bedside as his eyes opened wide and he stopped breathing. Freaky.

            Each was in pain before the morphine put them under. Same with my brother Joe, body riddled with cancer. So much pain for them that morphine and then death were welcome. Death was not painless for them. My mother went quietly but Alzheimer’s had long taken her anyway. Dad knew he was dying and was scared, wanted “my boys” around him. I was not there at the end.


      1. It is day 4 for me with no Tylenol and no Advil thanks to your article. Feel pretty fatigued and achy, but it’s time I gave my poisoned body a break. Not taking the supplement you talked about yet either as I still haven’t been able to get going and find it, but not poisoning my system with those over-the-counter “meds” either anymore!


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