Parents Frequently Err in Dosing Children With Liquid Medications


A recent study found that adults responsible for giving their children liquid medications often gave them too much. Errors occurred most frequently when the dosing device was a cup instead of a spoon or oral syringe.

In the study, when parents were asked to prepare a 5-mL dose for a child, about 70% of the 302 parents in the trial put more than 6 mL in cups that were packaged with the medication.

Dosing errors were nearly twice as common among caregivers who tested poorly for health literacy.

The study concludes that it may be necessary to reconsider how medications intended for young children are packaged, including redesigning of dosing devices.

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