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Regulator announces stricter paracetamol dosing for children

By Ellie Broughton

The UK medicines regulator has announced stricter guidance for the amount of liquid medicines containing paracetamol children should be given.

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency has introduced a raft of new age bands and given a single dose per age band.

The updated guidance comes the week after research showed that children in primary care are often prescribed too high or low a dose of paracetamol, exposing them to toxicity.

The current single age band - six to 12 years - is now divided into three new bands. Children aged six to eight years are advised to take a 5ml dose of a paracetamol six plus suspension (240/250 mg/5ml); those aged eight to 10 years a 7.5ml dose, and those aged 10 to12 years a 10ml dose, up to four times a day. Click here to download the new guidance.

For younger children, the youngest band (up to six months) are able to take 2.5ml of an infant paracetamol suspension (120 mg/5ml) four times a day and the oldest (four to six years) able to take 10ml at the same frequency.

Dr June Raine, MHRA director of vigilance and risk management of medicines, said the updated guidance was introduced to provide additional information, rather than to reduce safety concerns.

'This updated dosing advice will clarify the doses, making it easier for parents and carers to know exactly how much paracetamol they should give their children,' she said.

Click here to download the new guidance.

Article updated 12:02

New children's paracetamol dosing Click here to download a table of the MHRA's new paracetamol dosing recommendations for children. New guidelines Regulator announces stricter paracetamol dosing for children


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