Nonprescription medication use by infants and children: Product labeling versus evidence-based medicine

Katherine Kelly Orr, University of Rhode Island
Kelly L. Matson, University of Rhode Island Feinstein Providence Campus
Brian J. Cowles, University of Rhode Island Feinstein Providence Campus


Nonprescription or over-the-counter (OTC) medication use has been an increasing market over the past years. In addition to adult use of these medications, children also account for this trend. Although relatively safe when used according to package labeling and professional direction, serious adverse drug events and toxicity associated withOTC use among infants and children are becoming more common. The purpose of this review is to help the health care practitioner select and counsel on pediatric OTC products based on labeling and efficacy data in 3 main areas: cough and cold, analgesics, and treatment of gastroenteritis. © 2006 Sage Publications.