By Dr. Rachel Meyers, Clinical Associate Professor in the Pharmacy Practice Department at the Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy, Rutgers University
Towards a Renaissance of Pediatric Pharmaceutical Development
Successful drug delivery to pediatric patients depends on overcoming basic differences between children and adults. Pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic differences can make drug development challenging for very young patients. One can think of pediatric medicines as one of the last uncharted frontiers in patient-centric drug development.
Oral dosage forms, the preferred administration route, may not always be palatable or available in doses appropriate for children. Thus pills and tablets are often manipulated in ways that are not ideal for delivering safe, effective, and consistent doses. Compounding pharmacies can help but their results are not always reproducible. Parents often resort to dividing doses, crushing and dissolving them in liquids, and administering drugs in quantities that have not been adequately tested.