According to the study from the
University of Copenhagen, the dose of paracetamol given to the babies in the
first year of life is proportional to the risk of them suffering from breathing
problems in their early ages. Scientists believe that the paracetamol given to
the babies makes them vulnerable to several allergies and inflammation.
However, the researchers have not been able to prove the cause and effect yet.
Professor Hans Bisgaard, a senior
researcher, warns parents that they should use paracetamol only when it is
necessary or the baby has high temperature.
The research led by Professor
Hans Bisgaard studied 336 children, whose health was monitored from the time of
birth till the age of three years. All these children had mothers suffering
from asthma. It was observed that by the age of three, 19% of these babies had
asthma-like symptoms, which was more common in those who had been given more
paracetamol. Doubling of the number of days during which the paracetamol was
given showed an increase in 28% of risks of developing asthma by the age of
three. However, it was also observed that when these children reached the age
of seven, the symptoms disappeared; 14% of the children had asthma at that
point and there were no greater risks for those who were given the drug as
Researchers believe that the
children with asthma tend to get more severe respiratory infections and hence
many of them have been given more treatment and medication as a result.
This study was published in the Journal of Allergy and
Clinical Immunolgy. Professor Bisgaard says that it is too early to conclude
the results, but the findings should encourage further research into a
"plausible biological mechanism".