According to About.com, paracetamol is a name for the generic drug acetaminophen, and is the common name for this drug used in the United Kingdom. Acetaminophen is the active ingredient in the branded medication Tylenol.
WebMD states that acetaminophen can be taken orally to treat mild and moderate pain such as from headaches, toothaches, backaches, osteoarthritis, menstrual periods, and pains associated with colds and flu. The drug can also be used to help reduce fever.
Taking too much of the drug can be harmful to the liver and even lead to death. Alcohol can exacerbate damage to the liver and should be avoided when taking acetaminophen.