Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Errors put infants, children at risk for overdose of painkillers: Prescriptions for narcotics often contain too much medication per dose

Date:
May 1, 2011
Source:
American Academy of Pediatrics
Summary:
Parents who give young children prescription painkillers should take extra care to make sure they give just the right amount. What they may be surprised to learn, however, is that the dose given to them by the pharmacy could be too high.

Parents who give young children prescription painkillers should take extra care to make sure they give just the right amount. What they may be surprised to learn, however, is that the dose given to them by the pharmacy could be too high, according to research presented on April 30 at the Pediatric Academic Societies (PAS) annual meeting in Denver.

Researchers from South Carolina identified the top 19 narcotic-containing drugs prescribed to children ages 0-36 months who were enrolled in the Medicaid program from 2000-2006. For each of 50,462 outpatient prescriptions, they calculated the expected daily dose of the narcotic based on an estimate of the child's weight, age and gender. Then they compared that dosage with the actual amount of painkiller dispensed by the pharmacy.

Results showed that 4.1 percent of all children received an overdose amount.

Of more concern was the finding that the youngest children had the greatest chance of receiving an overdose, according to lead researcher William T. Basco Jr., MD, MS, FAAP, associate professor and director of the Division of General Pediatrics at the Medical University of South Carolina.

"Our goal was to determine the magnitude of overdosing for this high-risk drug class in a high-risk population, and these results are concerning," Dr. Basco said.

Narcotics such as codeine and hydrocodone can be dangerous for infants and children because of their sedative effects.

About 40 percent of children younger than 2 months of age received an overdose amount compared to 3 percent of children older than 1 year. For the average child who had an overdose quantity dispensed, the amount of narcotic drug dispensed was 42 percent greater than would have been expected.

"Almost one in 10 of the youngest infants ages 0-2 months received more than twice the dose that they should have received based on their age, gender and a conservative estimate of their weight," Dr. Basco said.

"Since we know that parents have difficulty measuring doses of liquid medication accurately," Dr. Basco concluded, "it is critical to strive for accurate narcotic prescribing by providers and dispensing by pharmacies."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Academy of Pediatrics. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Academy of Pediatrics. "Errors put infants, children at risk for overdose of painkillers: Prescriptions for narcotics often contain too much medication per dose." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 May 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110430133117.htm>.
American Academy of Pediatrics. (2011, May 1). Errors put infants, children at risk for overdose of painkillers: Prescriptions for narcotics often contain too much medication per dose. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110430133117.htm
American Academy of Pediatrics. "Errors put infants, children at risk for overdose of painkillers: Prescriptions for narcotics often contain too much medication per dose." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110430133117.htm (accessed July 30, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 30, 2014) Obamacare-related costs were said to be behind the profit plunge at Wellpoint and Humana, but Wellpoint sees the new exchanges boosting its earnings for the full year. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

AFP (July 30, 2014) Pan-African airline ASKY has suspended all flights to and from the capitals of Liberia and Sierra Leone amid the worsening Ebola health crisis, which has so far caused 672 deaths in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. Duration: 00:43 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

AP (July 30, 2014) At least 20 New Jersey residents have tested positive for chikungunya, a mosquito-borne virus that has spread through the Caribbean. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Generics Eat Into Pfizer's Sales

Generics Eat Into Pfizer's Sales

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 29, 2014) Pfizer, the world's largest drug maker, cut full-year revenue forecasts because generics could cut into sales of its anti-arthritis drug, Celebrex. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins