Parents Using Spoon for Medications May Be Overdosing

August 26, 2014 | Crandall & Pera Law
Parents Using Spoon for Medications May Be Overdosing

Parents may be making frequent dosing errors with their children's prescriptions and over the counter medications when estimating the amounts, according to a recent study. 

More than 40 percent of the parents interviewed for the study did not measure the medication correctly; one out of six of those parents used spoons out of their kitchen drawer.

A study in pediatric emergency medicine done a few years ago found the highest rate of dosing errors happened when in the middle of the night, when the fewest number of patients were there, which could also be a common time for mistakes when it comes to parents.

Some doctors believe prescribing medications in milliliters rather than teaspoons forces caregivers to be more precise. Manufacturers are also doing their part in bundling droppers into infant products, but since many of the medications are bought off the shelf, it really comes down to parents being willing to put away the spoon.

"There's a disturbing thing with drugs like Tylenol, acetaminophen," said Dr. Michael Rieder, chair of the drug therapy committee for the Canadian Pediatric Society. "There's a couple disturbing papers which suggested that a relatively small overdose, over a period of several days can result in liver damage....So under those circumstances, there's a certain number of children that get toxicity from small but sustained doses." Read the full details here:

Parents admit to dosing errors when giving kids medication

This article contains great advice for parents of small children.

If your child has suffered serious side effects or damages from a medication error you should seek legal investigation immediately. Crandall & Pera Law is available to help answer your questions and guide you in determining your next steps.