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Difference between Acetaminophen and Ibuprofen

Difference between Acetaminophen and Ibuprofen

When it comes to medications for pain relief, there are a few common options that people tend to reach for. Acetaminophen and ibuprofen are two of the most popular choices, but what’s the difference between them? And which one is right for you? Here’s a look at the key differences between acetaminophen and ibuprofen.

What is Acetaminophen?

Acetaminophen is a common pain reliever that is used to treat a variety of conditions. It is available over the counter and does not require a prescription. Acetaminophen works by reducing inflammation and swelling. It is often used to relieve pain from headaches, muscle aches, arthritis, menstrual cramps, and toothaches. Acetaminophen can also be used to reduce fever. side effects of acetaminophen may include nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, and rash. More serious side effects are rare but may include liver damage, kidney failure, and death. Acetaminophen is safe when used as directed. However, it is important to be aware of the potential risks associated with this medication.

What is Ibuprofen?

Ibuprofen is a medication in the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) class that is used for treating pain, fever, and inflammation. Ibuprofen is available over-the-counter (OTC) and as a generic drug. Common side effects of ibuprofen include heartburn, diarrhea, stomach pain, constipation, bloating, gas, dizziness, headache, and rash. Ibuprofen can increase the risk of serious cardiovascular events like heart attack and stroke, especially in people with cardiovascular disease or risk factors for cardiovascular disease.

Difference between Acetaminophen and Ibuprofen

Ibuprofen and acetaminophen are both pain relievers, but they work in different ways. Acetaminophen relieves pain by raising the pain threshold, while ibuprofen works by inhibiting the production of prostaglandins, which are hormones that play a role in pain and inflammation. As a result, ibuprofen is more effective at reducing inflammation and is often used to treat conditions like arthritis. However, acetaminophen is less likely to cause gastrointestinal side effects, making it the preferred choice for many people. Both acetaminophen and ibuprofen are available over-the-counter in a variety of formulations, including tablets, capsules, liquids, and gels.


Acetaminophen and ibuprofen are two of the most common painkillers on the market. They both work to reduce inflammation and relieve pain, but they do so in different ways. Ibuprofen is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) that blocks enzymes called cyclooxygenase 1 and 2 (COX-1 and COX-2). These enzymes are responsible for producing prostaglandins, which cause inflammation. Acetaminophen, on the other hand, works by blocking an enzyme in the brain called paraoxonase.

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