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Cold Meds Not Safe for Kids Under 2, FDA Warns
Date:1/17/2008

Decision on kids aged 2-12 expected this spring, officials add

THURSDAY, Jan. 17 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Thursday issued a public health advisory stating that over-the-counter cough and cold medicines should not be given to infants and children under the age of 2.

Although concern about the safety of these medications when used in the very young has been widely aired in recent months, FDA officials said they were concerned the public wasn't getting the message.

"We strongly recommend that over-the-counter cough and cold products should not be used in young children under 2, because serious and potentially life-threatening side effects can occur from use of these products," Dr. Charles Ganley, director of the FDA's Office of Nonprescription Products, said during a morning news conference. "We have not come to a final decision on the use of cough and cold products in children aged 2 to 11 and continue to work within [the] FDA to arrive at a decision."

"We were concerned that parents would continue to use these products in children under 2, even with all the publicity," Ganley added.

"The public health advisory from the FDA is definitely a good thing," said Catherine Tom-Revzon, clinical pediatric pharmacy manager at Children's Hospital, Montefiore Medical Center, in New York City. "A lot of health-care professionals, including myself, have always taken the approach of not giving medication to children where there isn't enough evidence to show that it's safe and actually works. This actually supports that idea, so it gives more credibility when we speak to patients about this."

"I'm a parent of a toddler myself, and my daughter has had multiple colds, and it is difficult to watch and not do anything," she noted. "Now, parents are being told that they can't give medication. It's probably going to be difficult for them to accept, but the reality is it's better to
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