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Review: no evidence exists that paracetamol and ibuprofen differ for short term pain relief or safety in children, but ibuprofen more effectively reduces fever

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Q What is the relative effectiveness and safety of paracetamol (acetaminophen) and ibuprofen for short term treatment of pain and fever in children?


Embedded ImageData sources:

Medline, CINAHL, EMBASE/Excerpta Medica, Cochrane Library, Biological Abstracts, Biological Abstracts/RRM, Dissertation Abstracts International, Evidence-Based Medicine Reviews (EBMR) Best Evidence, EBMR Database of Abstracts of Reviews of Effectiveness, ERIC, Expanded Academic ASAP, General Science Abstracts, Health Reference Center Academic, Health Source Plus, Health Star, Oxford Pain Relief Database, PsycInfo, and Web of Science (all from inception to May 2002); bibliographies of relevant articles; websites; textbooks; and 4 key medical journals.

Embedded ImageStudy selection and assessment:

randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of participants <18 years of age who were receiving either ibuprofen or paracetamol for fever or moderate …

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  • For correspondence: Dr D A Perrott, TrialGraphix, Chicago, IL, USA.;

  • Source of funding: in part, Boots Healthcare Australia Pty Ltd.