2-Jan-13 7:00 AM  CST

Tamiflu Expands Usage To Include Infants

This month starts a new year as well as the official start of flu season.  With new beginnings, the Food and Drug Administration recently announced that the use of the flu drug Tamiflu (oseltamivir) will be expanded to include the use of the medication in children as young as two weeks old that have shown flu symptoms no longer than two days.  Although the medication has been approved to treat symptoms of the flu in this young age group, it is not approved to prevent the flu in infants.  Tamiflu was first approved in 1999 and the approval was to treat adults who have the flu no more than two days. 

Pharmacists and pharmacy technicians should note the following when dispensing to children.  “Pharmacists must provide the proper dispenser when filling a prescription so parents can measure and administer the correct dose to their children,” said Edward Cox, M.D., M.P.H., Director of the Office of Antimicrobial Products in the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research.  “Parents and pediatricians must make sure children receive only the amount of Tamiflu appropriate for their weight.”  Pharmacy technicians can be a ‘check system’ to remind pharmacists to include the proper dispenser as well as checking the proper dosages given to children.    
           
Sources:
1.  “FDA Expands Tamiflu’s Use to Treat Children Younger than 1 Year.”  FDA.  Web.  21 Dec 2012. 

2.  “FDA Approves Tamiflu For Infants With New Flu Symptoms.”  Fox News & Reuters.  Web.  24 Dec 2012. 

3.  Tamiflu Web Site.  www.tamiflu.com.

For additional information on this article, please contact:
 
Jennifer S. O'Reilly
 
Source: NPTAnews  

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