Quality of prescriptions in hospitalized children suffering from acute and persistent diarrhoea


  • Nazuk Sharma Department of Pharmacology, Himalayan Institute of Medical Sciences, Jolly grants, Dehradun, Uttarakhand, India
  • D. C. Dhasmana Department of Pharmacology, Himalayan Institute of Medical Sciences, Jolly grants, Dehradun, Uttarakhand, India
  • Taruna Sharma Department of Pharmacology, Himalayan Institute of Medical Sciences, Jolly grants, Dehradun, Uttarakhand, India
  • Alpa Gupta Department of Paediatrics, Himalayan Institute of Medical Sciences, Jolly grants, Dehradun, Uttarakhand, India




Children, Diarrhoea, Prescription Quality Index tool, Quality of prescriptions


Background: Diarrhoea is a major public health problem in children worldwide. It continues to be a major health challenge, especially in developing countries, despite the availability of regularly updated standard treatment guidelines. Non-compliance to such guidelines by the physicians has been a long standing story. The treatment is often marred with incapacitating prescription of drugs besides neglecting even the basic tenets of good prescribing. As a result, the quality of such prescriptions for diarrhoeal disorders in children remains poor. To gauge the magnitude of this problem in this setup towards possible corrective measures, the study was aimed to audit prescription practices in the management of acute and persistent diarrhoea in hospitalised children up to five years of age.

Methods: An observational study was conducted in 100 patients of either gender in the age group up to 5 years admitted with acute and persistent diarrhoea. A detailed medical history from the parents/guardians and the details of prescription from the time of admission till the discharge of the patient were obtained. Quality of prescriptions was analysed using prescription quality index (PQI) tool, a validated comprehensive tool described by Hassan et al in 2010. Based on this tool, prescription with the total PQI score of ≤ 31 were interpreted as poor quality, scores with 32 to 33 as medium quality and scores 34 to 43 as high quality with a possible maximum score of ‘43’.

Results: Based on the PQI tool for 100 children, 60 prescriptions were found to be of poor quality. Only 2 prescriptions were of medium quality, whereas 38 prescriptions were in high quality range. Average mean±SD score of prescriptions with poor quality was 25.2±1.48, ranging from 21 to 31. The mean±SD of prescriptions with medium quality was observed to be 32±0 and for prescriptions of high quality was 38.07±2.28. The total average mean score of all prescriptions was 30.23±6.50. Poor quality prescriptions were particularly observed for the patients with the diarrhoea with No dehydration.

Conclusions: Prescription appropriateness in spite of available guidelines continues to be a big challenge in the adequate management of patients with diarrhoeal disorders under the age group of five years in a tertiary care centre in India.


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How to Cite

Sharma, N., Dhasmana, D. C., Sharma, T., & Gupta, A. (2019). Quality of prescriptions in hospitalized children suffering from acute and persistent diarrhoea. International Journal of Basic & Clinical Pharmacology, 8(4), 792–797. https://doi.org/10.18203/2319-2003.ijbcp20191119



Original Research Articles