Editor's note: This is another in a series of AAP News articles that highlights the results of pharmaceutical clinical trials,which will allow pediatricians to practice more rational therapeutics.

The Best Pharmaceuticals for Children Act encourages pharmaceutical companies to study drug therapy in children by offering six months of extended patent exclusivity. This financial incentive has led to more than 100 drugs being studied in children and being labeled in a more specific way for children.

The majority of the drugs first studied had large potential populations to study and short-term outcomes needed to prove effectiveness. Ibuprofen (Advil,Motrin) received extended labeling for pediatric fever relief. Loratadine(Claritin) was labeled for allergic rhinitis and urticaria. Pimecrolimus(Elidel) received labeling for short-term and intermittent treatment of atopic dermatitis in children as young as 2 years of age.

Studies of drugs that had smaller target populations or had treatment effects that took longer to demonstrate were...

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