Survey in the Emergency Department of Parents' Understanding of Cough and Cold Medication Use in Children Younger Than 2 Years
ARMY INST OF SURGICAL RESEARCH FORT SAM HOUSTON TX
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Objectives In August 2007, the Food and Drug Administration FDA released a public health advisory recommending that over-the-counter cough and cold medications CCMs not be used in children younger than 2 years. Our objective was to assess parents awareness and understanding of the guidelines. Methods We surveyed caregivers of children younger than 2 years in the emergency department of an urban tertiary care military hospital where civilian patients are also treated. After completing the survey, caregivers received a handout explaining the FDA s recommendations. Results Our response rate was 99 264265. First-time parents constituted 45 114251 of responders. Education level was high school, 21 some college, 36 and college graduate, 40. Thirty-one percent 77247 were aware of the FDA guidelines. Of these 77, 44 57 reported the guidelines indicated CCMs were not safe in children younger than 2 years, and 18 23 saidCCMs have caused death. Twenty-six percent 68264 did not give CCMs to their children younger than 2 years, and 40 of these reported it was because of learning about the guidelines 63 165264 reported CCMs were effective, 11 ineffective, and 27 did not know. Fifty-seven percent 151263 reported CCMs were safe, 12 unsafe, and 31 unsure. Twenty-two percent 31143 planned to use or continue to use CCMs in their children, 34 did not, 23 not sure, and 21 only if their doctor advised it. Conclusions The majority of caregivers were not aware of the FDA guidelines on CCM use in children younger than 2 years. Most thought CCMs were safe and effective.
- Medicine and Medical Research