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Paracetamol orodispersible tablets: a risk for severe poisoning in children?


Ceschi, A; Hofer, K E; Rauber-Lüthy, C; Kupferschmidt, H (2011). Paracetamol orodispersible tablets: a risk for severe poisoning in children? European Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, 67(1):97-99.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

Childhood paracetamol (acetaminophen) ingestion with subsequent risk of hepatotoxicity is a major medical problem. The aim of this study was to investigate the risk of high-dose ingestion of orodispersible, fast-disintegrating paracetamol tablets in children.
METHODS:

A retrospective single-center case study of all accidental selfadministrations of solid or orodispersible 500-mg paracetamol tablets occurring in children ≤ 6 years, reported to the Swiss Toxicological Information Centre between June 2003 and August 2009.
RESULTS:

We found 187 cases with ingestion of solid 500-mg paracetamol tablets and 16 cases with ingestion of orodispersible 500-mg tablets. The mean ingested dose in the orodispersible-tablet group was 59% higher than in the solid-tablet group (p = 0.085). Administration of activated charcoal and/or N-acetylcysteine because of ingestion of a potentially hepatotoxic paracetamol dose ( ≥ 150 mg/kg body weight) was recommended in 32 patients (17.1%) in the solid-tablet group and in five (31%) in the orodispersible-tablet group.
CONCLUSIONS:

Orodispersible paracetamol formulations may represent an important risk factor for severe paracetamol poisoning in children. Over-the-counter availability may contribute to increasing the use of this galenic formulation and eventually the number of poisonings in children.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

Childhood paracetamol (acetaminophen) ingestion with subsequent risk of hepatotoxicity is a major medical problem. The aim of this study was to investigate the risk of high-dose ingestion of orodispersible, fast-disintegrating paracetamol tablets in children.
METHODS:

A retrospective single-center case study of all accidental selfadministrations of solid or orodispersible 500-mg paracetamol tablets occurring in children ≤ 6 years, reported to the Swiss Toxicological Information Centre between June 2003 and August 2009.
RESULTS:

We found 187 cases with ingestion of solid 500-mg paracetamol tablets and 16 cases with ingestion of orodispersible 500-mg tablets. The mean ingested dose in the orodispersible-tablet group was 59% higher than in the solid-tablet group (p = 0.085). Administration of activated charcoal and/or N-acetylcysteine because of ingestion of a potentially hepatotoxic paracetamol dose ( ≥ 150 mg/kg body weight) was recommended in 32 patients (17.1%) in the solid-tablet group and in five (31%) in the orodispersible-tablet group.
CONCLUSIONS:

Orodispersible paracetamol formulations may represent an important risk factor for severe paracetamol poisoning in children. Over-the-counter availability may contribute to increasing the use of this galenic formulation and eventually the number of poisonings in children.

Citations

3 citations in Web of Science®
4 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, further contribution
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:2011
Deposited On:26 Feb 2012 18:13
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 15:41
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:0031-6970
Additional Information:The original publication is available at www.springerlink.com
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1007/s00228-010-0943-x
PubMed ID:21104406

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