Medication error is something that we all fear in Emergency Medicine and do our best to avoid. Here’s a scenario and simple approach for you, provided by Zlatan Coralic, PharmD (Assistant Clinical Professor in the UCSF School of Pharmacy).

You are an emergency physician working in an underserved country. You are presented with an asthmatic kid with severe retractions and tight wheezes. Multiple nebulizers and corticosteroids have failed. You want to try some magnesium sulfate before risking intubation in a place with no reliable access to ventilator equipment. You know the dose should be 1 gm IV over 20 minutes.


A local finds this for you.
What does 50% mean?!

Trick of the Trade: Converting % to mg/mL

Add a “0” to the % value to get a mg/mL concentration

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Zlatan Coralic, PharmD

Zlatan Coralic, PharmD

Assistant Clinical Professor
Emergency Department Clinical Pharmacist
University of California, San Francisco (UCSF)
Zlatan Coralic, PharmD


Emergency Medicine Clinical Pharmacist. Views expressed here are my own. #FOAMed