Letter : Daughter killed by paracetamol

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The Independent Online
Sir: We fully support Sir David Carter's call for a ban on paracetamol ("Ban pain drug says leading surgeon", 1 October). Our 19-year-old daughter died earlier this year after taking between 10 and 20 tablets. Her death occurred because she was unaware of the fatal consequences of an overdose. The drug companies do not provide this information on their products.

We have written to a major drug company and spoken to the Minister for Health on this subject. They are neither convinced paracetamol is unsafe, nor prepared to reduce the death toll from this drug by taking the measures outlined by Sir David.

Our grief is exacerbated by the bitterness we feel. The fatal effect of a paracetamol overdose has been apparent for many years. An antidote has been available for 10 years. Our daughter and many like her need not have died had the drug companies, the Medicines Control Agency or the Government listened to the many people who have campaigned over the years for safer paracetamol.

How many more young people are going to die before action is taken?

MAUREEN and PETER LUKE

Daventry, Northamptonshire

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