Should We Make Cold Meds Safe For Children or Just Add Warning Labels on Package?
Posted Oct 22 2008 4:37pm
When a child comes down with a cold, parents want to give them relief so they go to the pharmacy searching through the many brands of over the counter cold medicine. But, did you know that there have been no studies to see if the medications are effective for children younger than 6 – years- old, and evidence is showing the medicine may be dangerous?
These are drugs so I would think the FDA would study them before approving them safe for children.
FDA guidelines allow label dosage data to be reduced 50 to 75 percent of what an adult would take. Many doctors are concerned about the FDA making this assumption because children often react very differently to meds than adults.
The FDA knows of 54 decongestant – related deaths in children and 69 deaths linked to antihistamines between 1969 and 2004. After concerns were raised about the safety of these meds pharmaceutical companies voluntarily withdrew 14 different infant cold medicines.
According the FDA, there are more than 800 cold-related over-the-counter medications on the market, and the revenue for sales of these products to children alone amounted to $3.8 billion in 2006. Doctors, however, say that fluids, moist air and saline drops are the best way to treat colds in children.
In response to the call for a marketing ban, one drug industry trade group -- the Consumer Healthcare Products Association -- responded that such regulations are unnecessary, instead suggesting that drug companies add warnings to pediatric cold medicines. Among the suggested labels are, "Do not use in children under 2," and "Do not use to sedate children."
Here's my question for you:
Do you feel the FDA is doing everything they can to protect us, Americans?