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Medical News & Perspectives
December 22 2010

Withdrawal of Infant Cold Medicines Decreases ED Visits by Half, CDC Finds

JAMA. 2010;304(24):2686. doi:10.1001/jama.2010.1831

The withdrawal in 2007 of over-the-counter cold and cough products marketed for use in infants appears to have cut in half the number of children younger than 2 years who require emergency department care for related adverse events, according to a recent study.

The study, by researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, examined records from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System: Cooperative Adverse Drug Event Surveillance database, which reflects a national sample of 63 hospitals with 24-hour emergency departments. The scientists examined the number of emergency department visits involving children's use of over-the-counter cold and cough medicines for 14-month periods before and after the infant formulations were voluntarily removed from the market by their makers (Shehab N et al. Pediatrics. 2010;126[6]:1100-1107).