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Acetaminophen, Caffeine, and Pyrilamine

Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Aug 25, 2020.

Pronunciation

(a seet a MIN oh fen, KAF een, & peer IL a meen)

Index Terms

  • Caffeine, Acetaminophen, and Pyrilamine
  • Pyrilamine, Acetaminophen, and Caffeine

Dosage Forms

Excipient information presented when available (limited, particularly for generics); consult specific product labeling.

Tablet, Oral:

GoodSense Menstrual Relief: Acetaminophen 500 mg, caffeine 60 mg, and pyrilamine maleate 15 mg

Midol Complete: Acetaminophen 500 mg, caffeine 60 mg, and pyrilamine maleate 15 mg [contains edetate disodium, fd&c blue #1 aluminum lake]

Midol Complete: Acetaminophen 500 mg, caffeine 60 mg, and pyrilamine maleate 15 mg [contains fd&c blue #2 aluminum lake]

Brand Names: U.S.

  • GoodSense Menstrual Relief [OTC]
  • Midol Complete [OTC]

Pharmacologic Category

  • Analgesic, Nonopioid
  • Histamine H1 Antagonist
  • Histamine H1 Antagonist, First Generation

Pharmacology

Acetaminophen: Although not fully elucidated, the analgesic effects are believed to be due to activation of descending serotonergic inhibitory pathways in the CNS. Interactions with other nociceptive systems may be involved as well (Smith 2009). Antipyresis is produced from inhibition of the hypothalamic heat-regulating center.

Caffeine: A cranial vasoconstrictor to enhance the vasoconstrictor effect. It is also used as a central stimulant for relief of headache.

Pyrilamine: H1-receptor antagonist.

Use: Labeled Indications

Menstrual period symptom relief: Temporary relief of cramps, headache, bloating, backache, water-weight gain, muscle aches, and/or fatigue associated with menstrual periods.

Contraindications

OTC labeling: When used for self-medication, do not use with other products containing acetaminophen or if you are allergic to acetaminophen, caffeine, pyrilamine, or any component of the formulation.

Dosing: Adult

Menstrual period symptom relief: Oral: Two tablets (acetaminophen 1,000 mg/caffeine 120 mg/pyrilamine 30 mg) every 6 hours as needed; maximum: 6 tablets (acetaminophen 3,000 mg/caffeine 360 mg/pyrilamine 90 mg) per day.

Dosage adjustment for concomitant therapy: Significant drug interactions exist, requiring dose/frequency adjustment or avoidance. Consult drug interactions database for more information.

Dosing: Geriatric

Avoid use (Beers Criteria [AGS 2019]).

Dosing: Pediatric

Menstrual period symptom relief: Oral: Children ≥12 years and Adolescents: Refer to adult dosing.

Dosage adjustment for concomitant therapy: Significant drug interactions exist, requiring dose/frequency adjustment or avoidance. Consult drug interactions database for more information.

Storage

Store at room temperature.

Drug Interactions

Abametapir: May increase the serum concentration of CYP1A2 Substrates (High risk with Inhibitors). Avoid combination

Acebrophylline: May enhance the stimulatory effect of CNS Stimulants. Avoid combination

Adenosine: Caffeine and Caffeine Containing Products may diminish the therapeutic effect of Adenosine. Management: Monitor for decreased effect of adenosine if patient is receiving caffeine; significantly higher adenosine doses or alternative agents may be required. Discontinue caffeine 24 hours in advance of scheduled diagnostic use of adenosine if possible. Consider therapy modification

Alcohol (Ethyl): May enhance the hepatotoxic effect of Acetaminophen. Monitor therapy

Amifampridine: Agents With Seizure Threshold Lowering Potential may enhance the neuroexcitatory and/or seizure-potentiating effect of Amifampridine. Monitor therapy

AtoMOXetine: May enhance the hypertensive effect of Sympathomimetics. AtoMOXetine may enhance the tachycardic effect of Sympathomimetics. Monitor therapy

Barbiturates: May increase the metabolism of Acetaminophen. This may 1) diminish the effect of acetaminophen; and 2) increase the risk of liver damage. Exceptions: Amobarbital; Butabarbital; Butalbital; Methohexital; PENTobarbital; Secobarbital; Thiopental. Monitor therapy

Broccoli: May decrease the serum concentration of CYP1A2 Substrates (High risk with Inducers). Monitor therapy

Bromperidol: Caffeine and Caffeine Containing Products may decrease the absorption of Bromperidol. Monitor therapy

BuPROPion: May enhance the neuroexcitatory and/or seizure-potentiating effect of Agents With Seizure Threshold Lowering Potential. Monitor therapy

Busulfan: Acetaminophen may increase the serum concentration of Busulfan. Monitor therapy

Cannabinoid-Containing Products: May enhance the tachycardic effect of Sympathomimetics. Exceptions: Cannabidiol. Monitor therapy

Cannabis: May decrease the serum concentration of CYP1A2 Substrates (High risk with Inducers). Monitor therapy

CarBAMazepine: May increase the metabolism of Acetaminophen. This may 1) diminish the effect of acetaminophen; and 2) increase the risk of liver damage. Monitor therapy

CloZAPine: CYP1A2 Inhibitors (Weak) may increase the serum concentration of CloZAPine. Management: Drugs listed as exceptions to this monograph are discussed in further detail in separate drug interaction monographs. Monitor therapy

Cocaine (Topical): May enhance the hypertensive effect of Sympathomimetics. Management: Consider alternatives to use of this combination when possible. Monitor closely for substantially increased blood pressure or heart rate and for any evidence of myocardial ischemia with concurrent use. Consider therapy modification

CYP1A2 Inducers (Moderate): May decrease the serum concentration of Caffeine and Caffeine Containing Products. Monitor therapy

CYP1A2 Inhibitors (Moderate): May increase the serum concentration of Caffeine and Caffeine Containing Products. Monitor therapy

CYP1A2 Inhibitors (Strong): May increase the serum concentration of Caffeine and Caffeine Containing Products. Monitor therapy

Dapsone (Topical): May enhance the adverse/toxic effect of Methemoglobinemia Associated Agents. Monitor therapy

Dasatinib: Acetaminophen may enhance the hepatotoxic effect of Dasatinib. Dasatinib may increase the serum concentration of Acetaminophen. Management: Avoid coadministration of acetaminophen and dasatinib if possible. If coadministration is unavoidable, monitor for signs/symptoms of hepatotoxicity, particularly in patients with greater acetaminophen exposure. Consider therapy modification

Doxofylline: Caffeine and Caffeine Containing Products may enhance the adverse/toxic effect of Doxofylline. Avoid combination

Esketamine: May enhance the hypertensive effect of CNS Stimulants. Monitor therapy

Flucloxacillin: May enhance the adverse/toxic effect of Acetaminophen. Specifically, the risk for high anion gap metabolic acidosis may be increased. Monitor therapy

Formoterol: Caffeine and Caffeine Containing Products may enhance the adverse/toxic effect of Formoterol. Caffeine and Caffeine Containing Products may enhance the hypokalemic effect of Formoterol. Monitor therapy

Fosphenytoin-Phenytoin: May decrease the serum concentration of Acetaminophen. Specifically, serum concentrations of acetaminophen may be decreased (leading to decreased efficacy), but the formation of the toxic N-acetyl-p-benzoquinone imine (NAPQI) metabolite may be increased (leading to increased hepatotoxicity). Monitor therapy

Guanethidine: May enhance the arrhythmogenic effect of Sympathomimetics. Guanethidine may enhance the hypertensive effect of Sympathomimetics. Monitor therapy

Imatinib: Acetaminophen may enhance the hepatotoxic effect of Imatinib. Monitor therapy

Indacaterol: Caffeine and Caffeine Containing Products may enhance the adverse/toxic effect of Indacaterol. Caffeine and Caffeine Containing Products may enhance the hypokalemic effect of Indacaterol. Monitor therapy

Iohexol: Agents With Seizure Threshold Lowering Potential may enhance the adverse/toxic effect of Iohexol. Specifically, the risk for seizures may be increased. Management: Discontinue agents that may lower the seizure threshold 48 hours prior to intrathecal use of iohexol. Wait at least 24 hours after the procedure to resume such agents. In nonelective procedures, consider use of prophylactic anticonvulsants. Consider therapy modification

Iomeprol: Agents With Seizure Threshold Lowering Potential may enhance the adverse/toxic effect of Iomeprol. Specifically, the risk for seizures may be increased. Management: Discontinue agents that may lower the seizure threshold 48 hours prior to intrathecal use of iomeprol. Wait at least 24 hours after the procedure to resume such agents. In nonelective procedures, consider use of prophylactic anticonvulsants. Consider therapy modification

Iopamidol: Agents With Seizure Threshold Lowering Potential may enhance the adverse/toxic effect of Iopamidol. Specifically, the risk for seizures may be increased. Management: Discontinue agents that may lower the seizure threshold 48 hours prior to intrathecal use of iopamidol. Wait at least 24 hours after the procedure to resume such agents. In nonelective procedures, consider use of prophylactic anticonvulsants. Consider therapy modification

Isoniazid: May enhance the hepatotoxic effect of Acetaminophen. Isoniazid may increase the metabolism of Acetaminophen. Specifically, formation of the hepatotoxic NAPQI metabolite may be increased. Monitor therapy

LamoTRIgine: Acetaminophen may decrease the serum concentration of LamoTRIgine. Monitor therapy

Linezolid: May enhance the hypertensive effect of Sympathomimetics. Management: Reduce initial doses of sympathomimetic agents, and closely monitor for enhanced pressor response, in patients receiving linezolid. Specific dose adjustment recommendations are not presently available. Consider therapy modification

Lithium: Caffeine and Caffeine Containing Products may decrease the serum concentration of Lithium. Monitor therapy

Local Anesthetics: Methemoglobinemia Associated Agents may enhance the adverse/toxic effect of Local Anesthetics. Specifically, the risk for methemoglobinemia may be increased. Monitor therapy

Lorlatinib: May decrease the serum concentration of Acetaminophen. Monitor therapy

MetyraPONE: May increase the serum concentration of Acetaminophen. More importantly, by inhibiting the conjugative metabolism of acetaminophen, metyrapone may shift the metabolism towards the oxidative route that produces a hepatotoxic metabolite. Monitor therapy

Mipomersen: Acetaminophen may enhance the hepatotoxic effect of Mipomersen. Monitor therapy

Nitric Oxide: May enhance the adverse/toxic effect of Methemoglobinemia Associated Agents. Combinations of these agents may increase the likelihood of significant methemoglobinemia. Monitor therapy

Norfloxacin: May increase the serum concentration of Caffeine and Caffeine Containing Products. Monitor therapy

Olodaterol: Caffeine and Caffeine Containing Products may enhance the adverse/toxic effect of Olodaterol. Caffeine and Caffeine Containing Products may enhance the hypokalemic effect of Olodaterol. Monitor therapy

Ozanimod: May enhance the hypertensive effect of Sympathomimetics. Management: Concomitant use of ozanimod with sympathomimetic agents is not recommended. If combined, monitor patients closely for the development of hypertension, including hypertensive crises. Consider therapy modification

Phenylephrine (Systemic): Acetaminophen may increase the serum concentration of Phenylephrine (Systemic). Monitor therapy

Pipemidic Acid: May increase the serum concentration of Caffeine and Caffeine Containing Products. Monitor therapy

Prilocaine: Methemoglobinemia Associated Agents may enhance the adverse/toxic effect of Prilocaine. Combinations of these agents may increase the likelihood of significant methemoglobinemia. Management: Monitor patients for signs of methemoglobinemia (e.g., hypoxia, cyanosis) when prilocaine is used in combination with other agents associated with development of methemoglobinemia. Avoid lidocaine/prilocaine in infants receiving such agents. Monitor therapy

Probenecid: May increase the serum concentration of Acetaminophen. Probenecid may also limit the formation of at least one major non-toxic metabolite, possibly increasing the potential for formation of the toxic NAPQI metabolite. Management: Consider limiting acetaminophen use in combination with probenecid. Probenecid may reduce clearance of acetaminophen to one of its non-toxic metabolities, increasing the risk for acetaminophen toxicity, even a lower doses. Consider therapy modification

Procarbazine: May enhance the adverse/toxic effect of Sympathomimetics. Management: Consider alternatives to this combination when possible. Procarbazine prescribing information states that this combination should be avoided. Consider therapy modification

Regadenoson: Caffeine and Caffeine Containing Products may diminish the vasodilatory effect of Regadenoson. Management: Avoiding using caffeine or other methylxanthine containing products (e.g., theophylline) for at least 12 hours prior to the administration of regadenoson. Consider therapy modification

Sodium Nitrite: Methemoglobinemia Associated Agents may enhance the adverse/toxic effect of Sodium Nitrite. Combinations of these agents may increase the likelihood of significant methemoglobinemia. Monitor therapy

Solriamfetol: Sympathomimetics may enhance the hypertensive effect of Solriamfetol. Sympathomimetics may enhance the tachycardic effect of Solriamfetol. Monitor therapy

Solriamfetol: CNS Stimulants may enhance the hypertensive effect of Solriamfetol. CNS Stimulants may enhance the tachycardic effect of Solriamfetol. Monitor therapy

SORAfenib: Acetaminophen may enhance the hepatotoxic effect of SORAfenib. SORAfenib may increase the serum concentration of Acetaminophen. Management: Avoid coadministration of acetaminophen and sorafenib if possible. If coadministration is unavoidable, monitor for signs/symptoms of hepatotoxicity, particularly in patients with greater acetaminophen exposure. Consider therapy modification

Stiripentol: May increase the serum concentration of Caffeine and Caffeine Containing Products. Avoid combination

Sympathomimetics: May enhance the adverse/toxic effect of other Sympathomimetics. Monitor therapy

Tedizolid: May enhance the hypertensive effect of Sympathomimetics. Tedizolid may enhance the tachycardic effect of Sympathomimetics. Monitor therapy

Theophylline Derivatives: CYP1A2 Inhibitors (Weak) may increase the serum concentration of Theophylline Derivatives. Exceptions: Dyphylline. Monitor therapy

TiZANidine: CYP1A2 Inhibitors (Weak) may increase the serum concentration of TiZANidine. Management: Avoid these combinations when possible. If combined use is necessary, initiate tizanidine at an adult dose of 2 mg and increase in 2 to 4 mg increments based on patient response. Monitor for increased effects of tizanidine, including adverse reactions. Consider therapy modification

Tobacco (Smoked): May decrease the serum concentration of Caffeine and Caffeine Containing Products. Monitor therapy

Vitamin K Antagonists (eg, warfarin): Acetaminophen may enhance the anticoagulant effect of Vitamin K Antagonists. This appears most likely with daily acetaminophen doses exceeding 1.3 or 2 g/day for multiple consecutive days. Monitor therapy

Adverse Reactions

See Acetaminophen and Caffeine monographs.

Warnings/Precautions

Concerns related to adverse effects:

• CNS depression: May cause CNS depression, which may impair physical or mental abilities; patients must be cautioned about performing tasks that require mental alertness (eg, operating machinery or driving).

• Hepatotoxicity: Acetaminophen has been associated with severe liver damage. Hepatotoxicity is usually associated with excessive intake and often involves more than one product that contains acetaminophen. Limit acetaminophen dose from all sources (prescription and OTC) to ≤4 g/day and avoid or limit ethanol to <3 drinks per day.

• Hypersensitivity reactions: Allergic reactions have been reported with acetaminophen; discontinue immediately if symptoms of allergic or hypersensitivity reactions occur.

• Skin reactions: Rarely, acetaminophen may cause serious and potentially fatal skin reactions such as acute generalized exanthematous pustulosis, Stevens-Johnson syndrome (SJS), and toxic epidermal necrolysis (TEN). Discontinue treatment if severe skin reactions develop (FDA 2013).

Disease-related concerns:

• Ethanol use: Use with caution with concomitant alcohol use; consuming ≥3 alcoholic drinks/day may increase the risk of liver damage.

• Hepatic impairment: Use with caution in patients with hepatic impairment.

Special populations:

• Pediatric: May cause excitability, especially in children.

Dosage form specific issues:

• Caffeine: Contains an amount of caffeine similar to 1 cup of coffee; limit the use of other caffeine-containing beverages or foods.

Other warnings/precautions:

• Dosage limit: Limit acetaminophen dose from all sources (prescription, OTC, combination products) and all routes of administration (IV, oral, rectal) to <4 g/day (adults).

• Self-medication (OTC use): When used for self-medication, notify health care provider prior to use if you have glaucoma, liver disease, difficultly in urination due to enlargement of the prostate gland, emphysema, or chronic bronchitis. Discontinue use and contact health care provider if new symptoms occur, redness or swelling is present, for pain that gets worse or lasts >10 days, or for fever that gets worse or lasts >3 days.

Patient Education

What is this drug used for?

• It is used to ease painful period (menstrual) cycles.

• It may be given to you for other reasons. Talk with the doctor.

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:

• Fatigue

• Anxiety

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:

• Liver problems like dark urine, fatigue, lack of appetite, nausea, abdominal pain, light-colored stools, vomiting, or yellow skin

• Unable to pass urine

• Change in amount of urine passed

• Stevens-Johnson syndrome/toxic epidermal necrolysis like red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin (with or without fever); red or irritated eyes; or sores in mouth, throat, nose, or eyes

• Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Note: This is not a comprehensive list of all side effects. Talk to your doctor if you have questions.

Consumer Information Use and Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only the healthcare provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for a specific patient. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a limited summary of general information about the medicine's uses from the patient education leaflet and is not intended to be comprehensive. This limited summary does NOT include all information available about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and does not replace information you receive from the healthcare provider. For a more detailed summary of information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine, please speak with your healthcare provider and review the entire patient education leaflet.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.