Dosage instructions in the newest batch of Tamiflu have scientists worried that parents will be meting out problems to their kids instead of a virus fighter.
A letter from scientists published in The New England Journal of Medicine warns pharmacists to beware dosing instructions given in teaspoons – as the syringe packed with the Tamiflu this time around shows measurements in milligrams (thirty, forty-five and sixty mg to be exact).
The standard pharmacist markings direct parents to administer the liquid in teaspoons, and that could create improper dosing, giving kids too much or too little of their anti-viral according to the letter signed by docs from the Emory and Feinberg schools of medicine and Symphony Capital: “Unless immediate steps are taken to improve the prescribing instructions for this drug in children, its safe use will be compromised.”
The doctors make suggestions for pharmacists to improve their labeling and call for future drugs to be packed with syringes that denote teaspoons.
With swine flu cases expected to start growing in coming weeks (and the shots’ market date still weeks away), Tamiflu’s kid version is expected to be in high demand. There’s even talk of shortages for the liquid form of the drug.
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