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Pediatric Dosing for Motrin

There are few things more unpleasant than an infant with a fever or an infant in pain. As many parents will tell you, these are times of desperation, and many times there are over-the-counter remedies on hand. However, reaching for something like Motrin (Ibuprofen) needs to be done cautiously. Motrin can be used to reduce a fever (oral temperature above 99 degrees or rectal temperature above 100.4 degrees), treat teething pain, soothe a sore throat, or treat an earache. Of note, ibuprofen should not be used in infants under 6 months of age.

Determining how much ibuprofen to give a pediatric patient is based on the child’s weight. And it is extremely important to pay close attention to the concentration of the medication along with the dosage instructions. For example, there are two separate forms of Motrin, infant versus child. The concentration of the infant preparation is 50 mg per 1.25 mL, while the child preparation is 100 mg per 5 mL. So even trying to give the same dose to a pediatric patient requires taking the concentration into account as you could inadvertently administer double the intended dose.

In both adults and pediatrics, ibuprofen blocks prostaglandins, which can decrease blood flow to the kidneys. In a healthy adult, this is a mild side effect, but in an infant, this can be far more serious. When using ibuprofen, be sure the child stays hydrated. And avoid using ibuprofen if the child is vomiting or has diarrhea, as this may exacerbate the dangerous dehydration.

When administering ibuprofen to a pediatric patient, do not give more than 4 doses in 24 hours. And be alert for signs of an overdose, such as slow breathing, drowsiness, restlessness, or bluish skin or lips. Also, be careful if the patient has a cold and is taking additional cold medication, as these frequently also contain ibuprofen. Administering multiple medications containing ibuprofen can lead to an overdose. Additionally, call the pediatrician if the fever persists for over 24 hours.

Here is a basic dosing chart for Motrin use with children:

\[\begin{array}{|c|c|c|} \hline \mathbf{Child’s} & \mathbf{Infant’s \;Motrin} & \mathbf{Children’s \;Motrin} & \mathbf{Adult \;Motrin}\\ \mathbf{Weight \;(lbs.)}& \mathbf{(50\; mg/1.25 \;mL)} & \mathbf{(100 \;mg/5 \;mL)} & \mathbf{(200 \;mg\; tablets)} \\ \hline \mathbf{12–17} & \text{1.25 mL} & \text{2.5 mL} & \text{X} \\ \hline \mathbf{18–23} & \text{1.875 mL} & \text{4 mL} & \text{X} \\ \hline \mathbf{24–35} & \text{2.5 mL} & \text{5 mL} & \text{X} \\ \hline \mathbf{36–47} & \text{3.75 mL} & \text{7.5 mL} & \text{X} \\ \hline \mathbf{48–59} & \text{5 mL} & \text{10 mL} & \text{1 tab} \\ \hline \mathbf{60–71} & \text{X} & \text{12.5 mL} & \text{1 tab} \\ \hline \mathbf{72–95} & \text{X} & \text{15 mL} & \text{1.5 tabs} \\ \hline \mathbf{96+} & \text{X} & \text{20 mL} & \text{2 tabs} \\ \hline \end{array}\]

Pediatric Dosing Motrin

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