Off-Label Drug Use in Pediatrics
Therapy for Pediatric Clients with Mood Disorders
An African American Child Suffering From Depression
The client is an 8-year-old African American male who arrives at the ER with his mother. He is exhibiting signs of depression.
· Client complained of feeling “sad”
· Mother reports that teacher said child is withdrawn from peers in class
· Mother notes decreased appetite and occasional periods of irritation
· Client reached all developmental landmarks at appropriate ages
· Physical exam unremarkable
· Laboratory studies WNL
· Child referred to psychiatry for evaluation
MENTAL STATUS EXAM
Alert & oriented X 3, speech clear, coherent, goal directed, spontaneous. Self-reported mood is “sad”. Affect somewhat blunted, but child smiled appropriately at various points throughout the clinical interview. He denies visual or auditory hallucinations. No delusional or paranoid thought processes noted. Judgment and insight appear to be age-appropriate. He is not endorsing active suicidal ideation, but does admit that he often thinks about himself being dead and what it would be like to be dead.
You administer the Children’s Depression Rating Scale, obtaining a score of 30 (indicating significant depression)
· Review the interactive media piece in this week’s Resources and reflect on the types of drugs used to treat pediatric patients with mood disorders.
· Reflect on situations in which children should be prescribed drugs for off-label use.
· Think about strategies to make the off-label use and dosage of drugs safer for children from infancy to adolescence. Consider specific off-label drugs that you think require extra care and attention when used in pediatrics.
By Day 5 of Week 11
Write a 1-page narrative in APA format that addresses the following:
· Explain the circumstances under which children should be prescribed drugs for off-label use. Be specific and provide examples.
· Describe strategies to make the off-label use and dosage of drugs safer for children from infancy to adolescence. Include descriptions and names of off-label drugs that require extra care and attention when used in pediatrics.
Reminder: The College of Nursing requires that all papers submitted include a title page, introduction, summary, and references. The Sample Paper provided at the Walden Writing Center offers an example of those required elements (available at
). All papers submitted must use this formatting.