Acetaminophen Elevates the Pain Threshold
Acetaminophen has both pain relieving and fever reducing effects, but minimal anti-inflammatory activity. While the mechanism of action of acetaminophen is complex and not fully understood, it is believed to exert its pain reliving effect in the central nervous system and blocks the production of chemicals that might increase sensitivity to pain. The resulting effect of Acetaminophen is an elevation in the body's overall pain threshold, so you feel less pain.3
Aspirin Reduces Inflammation
Like acetaminophen, this time-tested painkiller is an effective headache reliever. However, it also works by reducing inflammation.3 Aspirin works in the peripheral nervous system to inhibit the production of inflammatory chemicals that cause swelling of the blood vessels and activation of nerves that transmit pain signals to the brain. The resulting effect helps ease the inflammation that contributes to your pain.4
Caffeine Amplifies the Pain Reliving Potency
The same compound that jump-starts your day is also a key component in Excedrin® Extra Strength.5 Caffeine has been shown to make the painkillers in Excedrin® more potent than they are on their own.6 In fact, research has demonstrated that without caffeine, a 40% higher analgesic dose would be required to achieve the same level of pain relief.6
What About the Other Formulas of Excedrin®?
Excedrin® Tension Headache contains acetaminophen and caffeine, and relieves pain in the neck and shoulders associated with tension headaches.7 Excedrin® PM Headache contains both painkillers but, of course, leaves out the caffeine (it includes a sleep aid in its place).8 It relieves headaches along with the minor aches and pains caused by sleeplessness.
A Complete Approach
Just as you’d lock all the doors in your home in order to stay safe, it’s smart to block as many pain pathways to your head as possible.9 The combination of ingredients in Excedrin® Extra Strength work together to fight your headaches.