24 January 2024
In January 2024 a paper by Florence Vincent, John Thompson, Laurence Gray, Sally Bradberry, Euan Sandilands, Ruben Thanacoody and David Tuthill on “Medication errors involving intravenous paracetamol in children: experience from enquiries to the National Poisons Information Service” was published (ahead of print) in the Archives of Disease in Childhood.
The paper provides the first national UK data focusing on paediatric intravenous (IV) paracetamol poisoning. Children are at higher risk of medication errors due to the complexity of drug prescribing and administration in this patient group. The authors found that inadvertent IV paracetamol overdose appears to occur more frequently in young children; a significant proportion were calculation errors which were often 10-fold errors. While these errors have the potential for causing serious harm, thankfully most cases were asymptomatic. Errors with IV paracetamol might be reduced by electronic prescribing support systems, better communication regarding administration and consideration of whether other routes are more appropriate.
You can read the article here.
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