A Few Active Ingredients to Rule Them All and In the Darkness Market Them

Cracked Science

The market for pain relievers seemingly knows no end. Approaching the counter which holds these products—a series of shelves which, in my mind, always shake imperceptibly as if under the weight of so much diversity—can cause in the common shopper the very symptoms he or she is looking to qualm: headaches, heavy sweating, and a general malaise. But are all these products distinct enough to warrant separate and often pointedly marketed labels? Should one simply ignore their bottle of Tylenol Regular Strength and go out to buy Tylenol Cold-and-Flu Severe when the sniffles arrive?

It is an often overlooked and rarely spoken truth: modern medicine holds a relatively small arsenal of drugs to treat common ailments. We do not have dozens of pain relievers available over the counter: so why is it that drug companies seem to be cranking out new ones every year?

I would like to invite…

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