What Mathematics Are Involved in Drug Dosage Calculations?


Quick Answer

Before calculations are performed, all units involved should be converted into one system, notes NursesAreGreat.com. There is a basic formula, which is frequently used to calculate drug dosages. Other methods used include ratio and proportion, fractional equation, intravenous flow rate calculation and continuous infusions.

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Full Answer

The basic formula states that D/H * V = amount to give. In this formula, D refers to the ordered or desired dose, H refers to the dose on container label or on hand, and V refers to amount and form of drug, such as tablet, capsule or liquid, explains NursesAreGreat.com. The ratio and proportion method, H : V :: D : x, is the oldest method used for calculating doses, where H and V are known values, and D and x represent the desired dose and amount to give. D and V are multiplied to equal the product of H and x. The fractional equation states that H/V = D/x. For both of these methods, x must be solved for.

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