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Avicenna J Med. 2020 Jan 23;10(1):10-14. doi: 10.4103/ajm.ajm_58_19. eCollection 2020 Jan-Mar.

The status of drug wastage in the pediatric emergency department of a tertiary hospital.

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Department of Pediatrics, Adiyaman University School of Medicine, Adiyaman, Turkey.
Department of Pediatrics, Çukurova University School Medicine, Adana, Turkey.



The aim of this study was to evaluate surplus drugs left over from medications used via the intravenous and intramuscular routes in a pediatric emergency unit of a tertiary hospital in Turkey and to determine the financial burden imposed by drug wastage.

Materials and Methods:

The study was planned prospectively on patients presenting to the pediatric emergency department of a tertiary university hospital between January 1 and April 30, 2017, on weekdays and between 08:00 and 16:00, for any reason, and receiving intravenous and/or intramuscular drug administration resulting in drug wastage after treatment.


The number of patients enrolled in the clinical trial was 1620 (35.9%). Twenty-one different medications were administered via the intravenous or intramuscular (IM) routes during the study. The proportion of total medication wastage at the end of trial was estimated to be 0.425. The drug with the highest proportion of mean wastage to drug form was paracetamol (1000mg vial) at 0.79. The total cost of the drugs used for the patients in the study was US$580.98, and the overall burden of drug wastage was US$288.09. The three medications involving the highest wastage costs were methylprednisolone, ondansetron, and dexamethasone. The total wastage cost/total drug cost ratio was 0.495.


If commercial drugs with intravenous and IM formulations are used by the pediatric age group, then dosage formulations appropriate for pediatric age group use also need to be produced. The development by manufacturers of ampoules and similar products suitable for multiple use will also reduce drug wastage. Reducing levels of drug wastage will inevitably reduce the drug expenditure.


Cost; drug; formulations; pediatric emergency department; wastage

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