Antibiotic Use in Children - Off-Label Use

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Abstract:

Systemic antibiotics are the group of drugs most commonly used in children. Off-label antibiotic use in children is still common in the community and in hospitals, mostly because of young age, dosage, or frequency of drug application. There is an important incentive gap that hinders paediatric drug development resulting from a series of factors, such as small market size, a predominance of off-patent use, no incentives for generic drug manufacturers, and a greater complexity of drug development. The latter is due to varying capacities of drug absorption and metabolism during growth and maturation and the need for oral formulations in neonates and infants. High ethical barriers, combined with concerns of parents about drug safety, further complicate the conduct of clinical studies in children. While many off-patent antibiotics today are labelled for use in children, newer substances such as fluoroquinolones, azithromycin, linezolid, or daptomycin are not. This is of concern in the light of emerging multidrug-resistant pathogens.

Keywords: Antibiotic therapy; adverse drug reaction; children; frequency of drug application; infants; neonates; off-label use; off-licensed; paediatric; unlicensed

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2174/138945012800675777

Affiliations: Infection Control Program, University of Geneva Hospitals, 4 Rue Gabrielle Perret-Gentil, 1211 Geneva 14, Switzerland.

Publication date: June 1, 2012

More about this publication?
  • Current Drug Targets aims to cover the latest and most outstanding developments on the medicinal chemistry and pharmacology of molecular drug targets e.g. disease specific proteins, receptors, enzymes, genes. Each issue of the journal will be devoted to a single timely topic, with series of in-depth reviews, written by leaders in the field, covering a range of current topics on drug targets. These issues will be organized and led by a guest editor who is a recognized expert in the overall topic. As the discovery, identification, characterisation and validation of novel human drug targets for drug discovery continues to grow; this journal will be essential reading for all pharmaceutical scientists involved in drug discovery and development.
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