The Journal of the American Medical Association released a study Tuesday which found that many over-the-counter children's medications have dosing devices that are nonexistent or inconsistent with instructions on the label, the Los Angeles Times reports.
Researchers said these incongruities can lead even the most conscientious parents to under or overdose their children, with about half of adults making mistakes when administering medicine to kids.
The study looked at 200 painkillers and liquid medications for cough, fever, cold, stomach and allergies formulated for children under 12. According to the news source, about 25 percent of these medicines did not include a measuring device, and 99 percent of the ones that did had at least one inconsistency between the label and the device.
Some medications had instructions for dosages in teaspoons and tablespoons, while the measuring devices were marked in milliliters.
Study author Dr. Shonna Yin told CNN that "this is really an issue of patient safety and needs to be urgently addressed."
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) set voluntary guidelines in 2009 which recommend that companies include dosing devices and standardize their measurement units, reports the news provider.