Paracetamol for treating fever in children.
ABSTRACT Paracetamol (acetaminophen) is widely used for treating fever in children. Like ibuprofen, aspirin, and physical methods (such as fanning), paracetamol aims to provide relief from symptoms and prevent febrile convulsions. Uncertainty exists about the benefits of using it to treat fever in children.
To assess the effects of paracetamol for treating fever in children in relation to fever clearance time, febrile convulsions, and resolution of associated symptoms.
We searched the Cochrane Infectious Diseases Group specialized trials register (November 2001), The Cochrane Controlled Trials Register (The Cochrane Library Issue 4, 2001), MEDLINE (1966 to November 2001), EMBASE (1988 to November 2001), LILACS (2001, 40a Edition CD-ROM), Science Citation Index (November 2001), and reference lists of articles. We also contacted researchers in the field.
Randomized and quasi-randomized trials of children with fever from infections comparing: (1) paracetamol with placebo or no treatment; and (2) paracetamol with physical cooling methods (eg, sponging, bathing, or fanning). The primary outcomes were fever clearance time and febrile convulsion.
Two reviewers independently extracted data on methods, types of participants, interventions, and outcomes. The meta-analysis was conducted using Relative Risk with 95% confidence intervals for discrete variables, and weighted mean differences for continuous outcomes.
12 trials (n = 1509 participants) met the inclusion criteria. Outcomes varied between trials. No data were available on the primary outcome. There is insufficient evidence to show whether paracetamol influenced the risk of febrile convulsions. In a meta-analysis of two trials (n = 120), the proportion of children without fever by the second hour after treatment did not differ significantly between those given paracetamol and those sponged (Relative Risk 1.84; confidence interval 0.94 to 3.61, random effects model). The statistical test showed significant heterogeneity between the groups receiving paracetamol or physical methods. No severe adverse events were reported. The number of children with mild adverse events did not differ significantly between paracetamol and placebo, or paracetamol and physical methods, but numbers were small.
Trial evidence that paracetamol has a superior antipyretic effect than placebo is inconclusive. There is limited evidence that there is no difference between the antipyretic effect of paracetamol and physical methods. Data on adverse events in these trials were limited. Establishing standard outcomes will help comparisons between studies and meta-analysis.
- SourceAvailable from: Tarachand Lalwani[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Background. In the absence of standard pediatric prescribing information, clinicians often use medicines in an off-label way. Many studies have been published across the globe reporting different rates of off-label use. There is currently no study based on Indian drug formulary. Methods. The prospective observational study included pediatric patients in ages between 0 and 12 years admitted in a tertiary care hospital. Off-label use was assessed using the National Formulary of India (NFI). Predictors of off-label use were determined by logistic regression. Results. Of the 1645 medications prescribed, 1152 (70%) were off-label based on 14 possible off-label categories. Off-label medicines were mainly due to dose difference and use in restricted age limits as indicated in NFI. Respiratory medicines (82%), anti-infectives (73%), and nervous system medicines (53%) had higher off-label use. Important predictors of off-label prescribing were pediatric patients in age of 0 to 2 years (OR 1.68, 95% CI; P < 0.001) and hospital stay of six to 10 days (OR 1.91, 95% CI; P < 0.001). Conclusion. Off-label prescribing is common among pediatric patients. There is need to generate more quality data on the safety and efficacy of off-label medicines to rationalize pediatric pharmacotherapy.International Journal of Pediatrics 01/2014; 2014:415815.
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ABSTRACT: Fever is a very common complaint in children and is the single most common non-trauma-related reason for a visit to the emergency department. Parents are concerned about fever and it's potential complications. The biological value of fever (i.e., whether it is beneficial or harmful) is disputed and it is being vigorously treated with the belief of preventing complications such as brain injury and febrile seizures. The practice of alternating antipyretics has become widespread at home and on paediatric wards without supporting scientific evidence. There is still a significant contrast between the current concept and practice, and the scientific evidence. Why is that the case in such a common complaint like fever The article will discuss the significant contrast between the current concepts and practice of fever management on one hand, and the scientific evidence against such concepts and practice.World journal of clinical pediatrics. 12/2012; 1(4):29-33.
- Current Treatment Options in Infectious Diseases. 09/2014; 6(3):208-226.