The American Academy of Pediatrics has called on pediatricians to exclusively use a milliliter-based dosing system, rather than telling patients/parents dosing information in teaspoons. This decision was influenced by various studies suggesting that confusion in dosage may harm patients. When given instructions in terms of teaspoons, patients often use household spoons, rather than precise measurement tools. Similarly, there is often confusion in dosage between mL and teaspoons. A different study focusing on primary care providers (PCPs) showed that 59% of PCPs said using mL alone is safer than using units such as tablespoons or teaspoons. Of these PCPs, pediatricians were most likely to say that mL-only dosing is safest. However, many primary care physicians, including many pediatricians, use both milliliters and teaspoons interchangeably when discussing dosing with patients and parents. It is therefore important to establish a standard method of dosage so as to avoid accidental overdose and harm to the patient.
(Lovegrove MC, et al. Acad Pediatr. Dec. 18, 2017, https://doi.org/10.1016/j. acap.2017.12.002)
Danielle Lyon (Pre-Med at Northwest University) & Dr. Heugel (Pediatrician at Seahurst Pediatrics)