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How to Calculate Pediatric Dosing

by
author image Brian Richards
Brian Richards is an attorney whose work has appeared in law and philosophy journals and online in legal blogs and article repositories. He has been a writer since 2008. He holds a Bachelor of Science in psychology from University of California, San Diego and a Juris Doctor from Lewis and Clark School of Law.
How to Calculate Pediatric Dosing
How to Calculate Pediatric Dosing Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Polka Dot/Getty Images

Pediatric dosing describes the calculation from an adult-appropriate milligrams per kilogram per day--mg/kg/day--to child-safe dosages. Determine child-safe dosages using the child's body weight. This calculation is not always completely accurate and requires a great deal of understanding about the medication that you are administering. If you are not completely confident in your ability to determine a child-safe dose of a specific medication, do not administer the medication. Rather, consult a trained physician or pharmacist who can better calculate what dosage is safe for your child.

Step 1

Determine the medication's mg/kg/day. You can obtain this information from the drug's manufacturer. In bulk medications meant to be distributed to multiple prescriptions, the manufacturer typically prints the dosage on the side of the packaging.

Step 2

Measure the child's body weight. Though the calculation requires the child's body weight in kilograms, you may also measure in pounds and convert.

Step 3

Convert the baby's weight from pounds to kilograms by dividing the baby's weight by 2.2. For instance, a child that weighs 22 pounds weighs 10 kg.

Step 4

Multiply the baby's weight in kilograms by the mg/kg/day amount. For instance, the dosage of a 30 mg/kg/day medication given to a 22 pound child should not exceed 400 mg/day.

Step 5

Divide the dosage by the frequency that you must administer the medication. A 22 pound child who takes a 30 mg/kg/day medication in four doses per day should take 100 mg per dose.

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