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aspirin / caffeine (anacin caplets, anacin tablets)

available over the counter: yes

uses: mild to moderate pain and inflammation; to reduce fever

mechanism of action: interferes with the release of prostaglandins (chemicals in the body which cause inflammation and make nerves more sensitive); caffeine enhances pain relievers

side effects
• common:
nausea, rash, ringing in the ears
• less common: insomnia
• serious: vomiting, agitation, fatigue, confusion, swelling of face; Reye's syndrome (allergic reaction causing swelling of face, lips and eyelids)

concerns: do not give to children under 16 years of age, unless instructed by your doctor; notify your doctor before any surgery as it may cause increased bleeding


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