The Metric System and Medication

Medication is prescribed in measurements of the metric system. Some students become anxious at just the mention of calculations. If you feel anxious and panicky, relax. We'll show you the easy way to perform these calculations.

Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. Click here for terms of use.

Table 7-1. Units and their equivalents.

Unit

Purpose

Equivalents

Gram

Weight

1 kilogram (kg) = 1000 grams (g) 1 gram (g) = 1000 milligrams (mg) 1 milligram = 1000 micrograms (mcg) 1 kilometer = 1000 liters

Liter

Volume

1 liter (L) = 1000 milliliters (mL) = 1000 cubic centimeters (cc)

1 milliliter (mL) = 1 cubic centimeter (cc)

Medication calculation requires you to know how to multiply and divide. You'll also need to know six metric measurements and five household measurements (ounces, teaspoon, tablespoon, cup and drop).

Let's begin with the metric system. The metric system uses grams to measure weight and liters to measure volume as shown in Table 7-1. Prefixes are used to indicate the number of grams and liters. Table 7-2 shows the commonly used prefixes that you'll see when calculating medication.

Each prefix indicates the value. The prefix is placed before the unit of measure such as 1 kilogram or 1 milliliter. Look at Kilo in Table 7-2. The factor is 1000, which is larger than a gram or liter. Therefore, you multiple the gram or liter by 1000. That is, a kilogram is 1000 grams and a kiloliter is 1000 liters. The important point to remember is that the prefix of the measure implies the size of the measurement.

Table 7-2. Prefixes used in medication.

Unit

Purpose

Equivalents

Kilo

1000

One thousand times

Centi

0.01

One hundredth part of

Milli

0.001

One thousandth part of

Micro

0.000001

One millionth part of

Anxiety and Depression 101

Anxiety and Depression 101

Everything you ever wanted to know about. We have been discussing depression and anxiety and how different information that is out on the market only seems to target one particular cure for these two common conditions that seem to walk hand in hand.

Get My Free Ebook


Post a comment