THURSDAY, June 2, 2022 (HealthDay News) — From 2012 to 2021, there was an increase in the annual number of pediatric ingestions of melatonin, with a total of 260,435 ingestions reported during the study period; these statistics were published in the June 3 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

Karima Lelak, M.D., from the Children’s Hospital of Michigan in Detroit, and colleagues used data from the American Association of Poison Control Centers National Poison Data System (NPDS) to examine isolated melatonin ingestions in children (aged 19 years and younger) during Jan. 1, 2012, to Dec. 31, 2021.

The researchers identified 260,435 pediatric melatonin ingestions reported to the NPDS during the 10-year study period, with a 530 percent increase in the annual number of ingestions. Compared with 0.6 percent in 2012, pediatric melatonin ingestions accounted for 4.9 percent of all pediatric ingestions reported in 2021. During the study period, pediatric hospitalizations and more serious outcomes due to melatonin ingestions increased, mainly due to unintentional ingestions increasing among children aged 5 years and younger. Mechanical ventilation was required for five children, and two children died.

“These results might help guide health legislators regarding the need for public health measures to raise awareness of increasing pediatric melatonin ingestions and to develop preventative measures to eliminate this risk,” the authors write.

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