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Archivos de Pediatría del Uruguay

Print version ISSN 0004-0584On-line version ISSN 1688-1249


MASTROIANNI, Mariana et al. Use of psychtropic drugs in hospitalized children. Arch. Pediatr. Urug. [online]. 2017, vol.88, n.3, pp.132-141. ISSN 0004-0584.


the estimated prevalence of emotional and behavioral problems in children is 20% at the national level. Psychotropic drugs are one of the therapeutic resources within their multimodal approach. Currently, there is a global increase in the use of these drugs.


to describe the frequency and to characterize the use of psychotropic drugs in children under 15 years old, who are hospitalized at the Pereira Rossell Hospital Center (CHPR).


a survey to parents and/or guardians of children older than 2 years old who were hospitalized between February and April 2014 was conducted, subsequent to their verbal informed consent and the hospital’s authorization of the protocol. The variables were the following: frequency of use, type of psychotropic drug, polytherapy, duration, source of knowledge about indication, type of professional treatment indicated and monitored, frequency of non-pharmacological treatments.


608 caregivers were surveyed; 46 children consumed 74 psychotropic drugs (7.6%, 95% CI 5.1 to 9.7%); average age 10 years old. Risperidone was the most frequently used drug (33/46). 21/46 children used 2 or more psychotropic drugs. The most frequent association was antipsychotics with mood stabilizers. At the time of the interview consumption was over one year for 58% of children in the study. In 89% of cases a psychiatrist was responsible for monitoring. 50% of children received no drug treatment.


the use of risperidone and the combination of antipsychotics with mood stabilizers prevails in this population. The study found a low proportion of patients was under multimodal treatment. It is necessary to prioritize the role of pediatricians in monitoring and coordinating these treatments.

Keywords : Psychotropic Drugs; Drug utilization; Pediatrics..

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