Author(s): Budhia Majhi1, Abinash Panda2, Saroj Kumar Barma3
The invention of antimicrobials emerged as a transformational turning point in the reduction of the burden of communicable disease in the 20th century. Antimicrobials are among the most widely prescribed therapeutic agents across the world. The use of antibiotics among children is different from adults due to a number of reasons like a lack of data on pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, efficacy and safety of drugs, different physiological spectrum among different age groups- preterm neonates, full-term neonates, infants and toddlers, older children and adolescents, paediatrics populations being vulnerable to the majority of the illnesses and the adverse effect of irrational use of antimicrobials being more serious among children than adults. However, antibiotic use is not explored much in a paediatric population. Existing reports of population-based antibiotic use in children are relatively few, so the present study was carried out in Berhampur city with the objectives of finding out the pattern of oral antibiotic use in children in the outpatient setting of a tertiary care hospital.
MATERIALS AND METHODS
This cross-sectional study was carried out on a convenience sample of 216 patients treated with oral antibiotics in the Paediatrics Outpatient Department in MKCG Medical College, Berhampur. Data was collected and analysed from the prescriptions after obtaining informed written consent of the patient’s attendant and there was no interaction with the patients. Any prescription with an oral antibiotic prescribed was included for the study. The main outcome measures were the pattern of oral antibiotic prescription. The data were expressed as proportions and analysed using GraphPad Prism software (trial version).
Of the 216 prescriptions analysed, the most common disease entity for which a prescription with an oral antibiotic was made was acute respiratory infections (68.05%). Cefpodoxime was the commonly prescribed antibiotic. In the present study, all antimicrobials were prescribed empirically without any microbiological evidence.
This study highlights antimicrobial prescription pattern in a paediatrics outpatient setting in a tertiary care hospital. Beta lactamase were the commonest antibiotics prescribed. The use of antibiotics without any microbiological evidence warrants for increasing the rational use of antibiotics in children.