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Getting Big Pills Into Small Children


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TForden Find out more about TForden
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  • Getting Big Pills Into Small Children

    I was in a discussion with another member on this topic, and thought it might be usefull to see what other ideas are out there for those of us with small children taking these big nasty tasting cardiac drugs.

    Here's a starter list of what works for our daughter Amy (3), who began taking Verapamil at age one.

    - crushing pills into apple sauce
    - put small pill in a 1/2 tsp of applesauce
    - putting their current distraction just out of reach (breakfast, toy, sippy
    cup, until ready to take pill. "let us know when your ready to take your
    pill, and after you finish that we can eat, play whatever...
    - At age three, she sometimes wants to test her limits (gee, thats
    unusual), and we have to eather delay what she's doing, or
    sometimes offer her a reward, like a piece of candy, (but we avoid
    taking away, then giving candy as a reward). Candy is usually when
    she's already asking for something special in the AM, and we just
    piggy back onto that oppty.
    - Sometimes will say, "let's take our pills together, Amy and daddy", and
    we do it together. I take another unrelated med, but you could do it
    with a vitamin.
    - We find it best to mix the approach up throughout the week to keep it
    interesting for her. The things still taste aweful!
    - Occationally when we're really at odds over it and the above does'nt
    work, we'lll wait a couple minutes with her not getting what she wants,
    then we'll sit her on our lap and talk nicely to her about how she needs
    to take her pill, because her mommy & daddy love her, and will she do
    it for us, so she'll be big and strong and healthy.
    - In part I think these things work because she knows we're going to
    sit there until she takes it.

    What works for you? Any good stories?

  • #2
    Re: Getting Big Pills Into Small Children

    My kids have been taking propronolol since birth. I remember they used to take the liquid form for many years. I'd say keep on taking the liquid formula until the pharmacy can't mix the higher dosages for the kids.

    I can't remember the exact age they switched to pills, but we really have never had any trouble getting them to take their pills. The propronlol pills are quite small so I guess its never been a concren.

    I work in a hospital and we do crush and mix the pills with applesauce, pudding or ice cream for patients who can't take them whole.

    Just my thoughts.
    Michelle - mom to Krista and Tyler both HCM
    Krista surgeries: 3/97 myectomy, 2/99 mitral valve replacement
    Tyler surgery: 1/98 myectomy


    • #3
      Re: Getting Big Pills Into Small Children

      Those are great ideas and I am sure they will be helpful to many. I think we all know what "buttons" to push to get our kids to do the things that would rather not. I would offer one suggestion...IF your approach is not working...do not turn it into a test of wills...come at it from a new angle. This will require some creativity but heck thats what parenting is all about... figuring out one ages quirks to the next!
      Best to all,
      Knowledge is power ... Stay informed!
      YOU can make a difference - all you have to do is try!

      Dx age 12 current age 46 and counting!
      lost: 5 family members to HCM (SCD, Stroke, CHF)
      Others diagnosed living with HCM (or gene +) include - daughter, niece, nephew, cousin, sister and many many friends!
      Therapy - ICD (implanted 97, 01, 04 and 11, medication
      Currently not obstructed
      Complications - unnecessary pacemaker and stroke (unrelated to each other)


      • #4
        Re: Getting Big Pills Into Small Children


        We found a good pharmacy wich prepares for our son a sweet syrup prepared like it is for diabetes people (with no real sugar) so we take care of the teeth and diet
        The pharmacist success to prepare 12.5 mg. or propanolol in 1 ml. so with the help of an injector (syringe) we put it on the mouth.
        We prepare a glass of water near if Matan needs "to change" the taste.
        The pharmacist also prepares the capsule (cachet of procor - Amiodarone) for us so the dosage is always exact, it is easier to concentrate on the child and easy to put in any kind of food or liquid.
        Matan takes his medicine since he was a baby so we didn't have special problems.
        He loves to take responsibility and often asks when is time to take the drugs when we go out.
        Having a routine helps him to understand it is a must for him!!!
        We use to show our appreciation, also in front of other people, to show our son how proud we are he takes the drugs with courage and acceptance.

        Wishes for healh, peace and love!

        Daniela E-H, Mother to Matan-Ben (13 years old) who had his AICD implantation (29/03/04) and Myectomy (14/12/08) and Noga (4 years old) not affected
        Haifa - Israel.


        • #5
          Re: Getting Big Pills Into Small Children

          Our pharmacy worked with us on the taste factor. Ry just takes liquid atenolol. He started at 19 months old. The pharmacy said if he didn't like it, to let them know and they would make it a little sweeter. He bulked a little bit the first month, so we asked if they could make it just a tad sweeter. He's not had any problems since. I know to call ahead to fill his prescription because they have to mix it special. He's been taking a variety of medications for ear infections, allergies, and heart since he was about 6 months old that he's pretty use to it. Though we do have days when we bulk or we have the "I do it!" But that's just part of being a 2 year old. I hope we can put off the pill thing for quite awhile.

          Amy N.