Physicians who prescribe a new drug that has not been approved for a specific indication or a specific age group frequently find themselves in a quandary. Physicians who prescribe "old," time-honored drugs usually do not consult the package insert or search for US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval. This statement was written to clarify the legal and informational status of the package insert and the role of the FDA in approving or not approving drugs for specific indications or specific age groups. The unapproved use of approved drugs, or so-called "off-label" use, is extremely prevalent among physicians who care for children. It is important that such use of compounds be brought up to date with current FDA policies and to emphasize the responsibility of the prescribing physician in the use of these compounds.
- Copyright © 1996 by the American Academy of Pediatrics