The objective of this study was to evaluate the appropriateness of antibiotic suspensions use for pediatrics among Palestinian mothers’ including their reconstitution, dose administration, duration, and storage conditions.
This study was a questionnaire based cross sectional descriptive study. It was conducted at a governmental primary healthcare center and a pediatric private clinic in Nablus city between January and March 2013. A sample of 400 mothers were met and asked to answer a face to face questionnaire.
The results showed that 347 (86.8 %) of mothers told that they read instructions, 311 (77.8 %) could understand manufacturers’ instructions, and 176 (44.0 %) of mothers asked pharmacists for advice when instructions were not well understood. In order to prepare antibiotic suspension, 302 (75.5 %) used boiled then cooled water, 192 (48.4 %) of mothers used a syringe to measure the needed amount of water, and 304 (76.6 %) added water in two steps, 392 (98.0 %) of mothers claimed that they shook the suspension bottle before use. Regarding dose administration, 313 (78.2 %) considered syringe as the most accurate tool for dose administration, most of mothers told that they gave drug dose with major meals when direction were to give three times daily, about use duration only 6 (1.5 %) mothers said that they used antibiotic suspension after 2 weeks, and 53 (6.5 %) gave left over antibiotic suspension to another child. One hundred seventy seven (44.2 %) mothers told they stored dry powder antibiotic in medicinal cabinet, while 226 (56.5 %) of them stored suspension in refrigerator.
The results reflect a good level of correct practice. However, there is a room for improvement. The pharmacists are recommended to explain the correct directions, to supply a syringe with suitable calibration for dose administration, and to counsel parents about suitable storage condition, frequency of dosing and duration of use.