Paracetamol, Pain, Pleasure, Prozac and Weight

A couple of years ago, an active 60 something neighbour shared that she had been suffering chronic pain, but she had been prescribed something called amitriptyline and it was helping noticeably. I was curious, so I did what I always do when I hear of a drug and searched for the PIL (Patient Information Leaflet). I was surprised to discover that amitriptyline is a pretty heavy duty anti-depressant.

I hadn’t thought any more about this until a headline last week “Paracetamol kills feelings of pleasure as well as pain”. A comment from Professor Baldwin Way, one of the researchers, caught my eye: “People who took paracetamol didn’t feel the same highs or lows as did the people who took placebos.

If you’ve ever heard someone describe taking anti-depressants, they typically say: “things even out”; “you don’t get the lows, you don’t get the highs”. This study is, I believe, the first to show that one of the most common painkillers, taken by millions of people world-wide, may have a similar effect, albeit on a slight scale...

 

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