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Fifteen-minute consultation: Pain relief for children made simple—a pragmatic approach to prescribing oral analgesia in the postcodeine era
  1. David G Mason
  1. Nuffield Department of Anaesthetics, John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Oxford, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr David G Mason, Consultant Paediatric Anaesthetist, Clinical Lead for Children’s Inpatient Pain Management Service, Nuffield Department of Anaesthetics, John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Headington OX3 9DU, Oxford, UK; david.mason{at}nda.ox.ac.uk

Abstract

What are the most effective doses of simple oral analgesics such as paracetamol and ibuprofen for pain relief in children? Why can’t I prescribe codeine phosphate for children anymore? Is oral morphine really a safe alternative to codeine phosphate, and if so what dose should I prescribe? These questions are frequently asked by clinicians who wish to give analgesics to children for pain relief. In this article I will address these questions and describe a pragmatic approach for pain relief using oral analgesics based on the best evidence available and my experience as a consultant paediatric anaesthetist.

  • analgesia
  • paediatric practice

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Footnotes

  • Contributor None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Correction notice This paper has been amended since it was published Online First. In the box titled ‘Answers to the multiple choice questions’,1B, line 5. ‘A dose 15 mg/kg sixtimes a day is well below the likely hepatotoxic dose of75mg/kg/day’. The six should be four. This has now been corrected.

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