A new study published in the Journal of Pediatrics reveals that the number of children in the United States being admitted in hospitals for accidental poisoning due to pharmaceutical drugs has increased dramatically in the last few years.
The study was led by Dr Randall Bond, an emergency medicine physician at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, who found that more than 450,000 children suffered from accidental poisoning of drugs between 2001 and 2008.
More than half of the total cases accounted for emergency visits while 76 percent of them were admitted and 71 percent of them were of significant harm. Three of the most common drugs causing accidental poisoning were painkiller opioids, sedatives-hypnotics and cardiovascular drugs.
"The problem of pediatric medication poisoning is getting worse, not better. Prevention efforts at home have been insufficient. We need to improve storage devices and child-resistant closures and perhaps require mechanical barriers, such as blister packs", Dr Bond said.