Caretaker compliance with different antibiotic formulations for treatment of childhood pneumonia

Edward Ellerbeck, Nagwa Khallaf, K. S. El Ansary, Salama Moursi, Robert Black

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Summary: To determine the effect of antibiotic formulations on compliance, 400 children, aged 2 months to 5 years, with a presumptive diagnosis of pneumonia, were randomly assigned to receive one of the following formulations of cotrimoxazole:. syrup accompanied by a 10-ml measuring cup;. syrup accompanied by a 5-ml measuring spoon;. tablets;. single-dose sachets of antibiotic powder.A research assistant visited the child's home on the fourth day of therapy, asked the care-giver about compliance, and observed the care-giver prepare a dose of the medication. The remaining amount of medicine was measured, and when possible (n=151), a urine specimen was tested for the presence of sulphamethoxazole.All of the care-givers reported giving at least one dose on the first day of therapy. By the fourth day, 82 per cent of those receiving syrup were still taking their medication compared to 71 and 55 per cent of those receiving sachets or tablets, respectively (P < 0.01). Of those who received syrup accompanied by a spoon, 38 per cent under-dosed the medicine by at least 30 per cent. Overall, compliance was highly correlated with the care-giver's report of difficulty in administering the medication. Additional research is needed to understand the obstacles encountered by care-givers in administering sachets and tablets. Meanwhile, the use of antibiotic syrup, accompanied by an appropriately sized measuring cup, appears to offer the greatest probability of medication compliance in the treatment of Egyptian children with pneumonia

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)103-108
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of tropical pediatrics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Infectious Diseases


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