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Pediatric Dose Calculator

Created by Łucja Zaborowska, MD, PhD candidate
Reviewed by Bogna Szyk and Steven Wooding
Based on research by
Pan SD, Zhu LL, Chen M, Xia P, Zhou Q. Weight-based dosing in medication use: what should we know?; Patient Prefer Adherence; 2016
Last updated: Jan 18, 2024


The pediatric dose calculator is a simple tool for computing the pediatric dosage for a child of a given weight. 👶

Our calculator allows you to convert values in mg or μg to a precise volume of the medication, using a wide range of units.

The article below is an essential part of our peds dosing calculator - keep on reading to discover all the necessary medical abbreviations, information on pediatric medication dosing, and tips on how to calculate the pediatric dose on your own.

We try our best to make our Omni Calculators as precise and reliable as possible. However, this tool can never replace professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. All information on this website is for informational purposes only and is not intended to and should not serve as a substitute for medical consultation. Always seek the advice of a health provider.

How to use the pediatric dose calculator?

Pediatric dosage is a complicated matter - we can't deny it. We decided to make things easier for you and explain step-by-step all the actions you need to take to receive the most accurate results.

💡 Our mg per kg dosage calculator works both ways; you may convert medication's weight to volume and the other way around.

  1. Decide whether your dose is given in mg or μg.

    Milligrams (mg) are 1000 times greater unit than micrograms (μg) - 1 mg = 1000 μg.

  2. Find out your type of dosage.

    Your dose in mg/μg might be given:

  • per kilogram per day (e.g., mg/kg/day) - the most popular option

  • per kilogram per dose (e.g., mg/kg/dose)

  • per day (e.g., mg/day)

  • per dose (e.g., mg/dose)

    The calculator will display the chosen dosage type underneath.

    Dosage type has a crucial impact on the value of the dosage!
    Only the first two types use the dosage calculator by weight; two latter ones rely on a predetermined amount of medication.

  1. Finally, enter your dose amount in mg or μg.

    Double-check all the settings - you want to make sure that the pediatric drug dose calculator is computing exactly what you want it to calculate.

  2. Choose the frequency. - check the section below.

  3. Choose the weight of your child and a proper unit.

  4. Enter your drug concentration.

    Choose the mass of the drug per given volume of the medication.

    The calculator will display the chosen concentration underneath.

💡 Our calculator can also compute the number of tablets needed. To calculate that, enter 1 into the volume field. 💊

  1. Yay! Your results are here - it wasn't that hard, was it?

For emergencies, you may try and discover our epinephrine dose for kids.

Dose frequency abbreviations

Dose frequency might be quite misleading since all the abbreviations originate from the Latin language. Here we present a short, useful medical dictionary:

  • dQ - once per day
  • BID - twice per day
  • TID - three times per day
  • QID - four times per day
  • q4 hr - once every four hours (6 times per day)
  • q3 hr - once every three hours (8 times per day)
  • q2 hr - once every two hours (12 times per day)
  • q1 hr - once every hour (24 times per day)

How do you calculate pediatric doses?

There's one primary dose calculation formula for children:

▪️ mg/μg per kilogram per day

dose (volume) = (dose (mg/μg) × child's weight) / (concentration × frequency)

where:

  • concentration is usually given in mg/mL
  • child's weight is given in kg
  • frequency means the number of times a chosen medication is given per day. E.g., q1 hr frequency has a value of 24.

However, this equation still has to be modified for every other type of dosage! Below, we enumerated all the available pediatric dosage calculations formulas:

▪️ mg/μg per kilogram per dose

dose (volume) = (dose (mg/μg) × child's weight) / concentration

▪️ mg/μg per day

dose (volume) = dose (mg/μg) / (concentration × frequency)

▪️ mg/μg per day

dose (volume) = dose (mg/μg) / concentration

Hey, how about discovering our other professional pediatric tools:

Child dose calculations examples

Our baby has a fever! 🤒🌡️👶

Still not sure how to calculate pediatric doses? We're going to focus on an mg/kg/day formula since it's the most complex one. Carefully follow the example below:

  • We bought some paracetamol to lower the fever - its container states that this syrup's concentration is equal to 120 mg /5 mL. Our prescribed peds dose is 10 mg/kg. Our kid's 4.5 years old and weights 20 kg. We need two doses of paracetamol per day.

How much mL of paracetamol syrup do we need per day?

Let's use the following formula:

dose (volume) = (dose (mg/μg) × child's weight) / (concentration × frequency)

First, let's boil down the concentration:

120 mg/5 mL / 5 = 24 mg / 1 mL = 24 mg/mL

Then come back to the equation itself:

dose (volume) = (10 mg/kg × 10 kg) / (24 mg/mL × 2)

dose (volume) = 100 mg / 48 mg/mL

dose (volume) = 2.083 ≈ 2.1 mL - we need 2.1 mL of paracetamol per dose, twice per day.

Yay, we got it! You're becoming the true pediatric dose master.

FAQ

What do we use the pediatric dose for?

The short answer would be: almost everything. Due to children's rapid growth and changes in their bodies, we almost always need to determine the exact amount of drugs we need to administer.

The situation is complicated even more because the pediatric drugs are often given in the form of a fluid, which obviously requires an additional portion of mathematics.

How to turn dose in mg to mL?

Let's calculate it nicely and simply:

  1. Use the following formula:
    dose (volume) = dose (weight) / concentration

  2. The typical volume of drugs is given in milliliters [mL].

  3. The typical weight of drugs is given in milligrams [mg].

  4. We usually use the concentration in the format of mg/mL

  5. That's it!

You got all the information needed — go get the job done! 🎉

How to turn dose in mL to mg?

We'll follow this short equation:

dose (weight) = concentration × dose (volume)

Since we know that the weight is usually given in mg, concentration in mg/mL, and volume in mL, we can quickly calculate everything we need to know!

What are the possible pediatric drug concentrations?

When it comes to pediatric doses, we usually give the drug concentration in milligrams per milliliter [mg/mL].

The exemplary pediatric concentrations are:

  • Paracetamol — 120 mg/5 mL or 250 mg/5 mL
  • Ibuprofen — 100 mg/5 mL or 50 mg/1.25 mL
  • Amoxicillin — 125 mg/5 mL or 250 mg/5 mL
Łucja Zaborowska, MD, PhD candidate
Dosage (weight)
Dose
mg
Dosage type
/kg/day
mg/kg/day
Frequency
qD
Weight
lb
Drug concentration
Mass
mg
per
ml
Dosage (volume)
Dosage
ml
per dose
ml
per 24h
Always double-check the calculations, the dosing information and contraindications on the leaflet. Consult your health provider before administering any medication. This tool cannot replace real medical consultation.
Check out 5 similar pediatric dosage calculators 👶💊
Amoxicillin pediatric dosageIbuprofen dosageInfant Tylenol dosage… 2 more
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