# Dosage Calculation: Tablets – Ratio and Proportion (Nursing)

by Rhonda Lawes

My Notes
• Required.
Learning Material 3
• PDF
Slides Nursing Dosage Calculation Ratio Proportion Medications.pdf
• PDF
Cheat Sheet Understanding Ratios.pdf
• PDF
Report mistake
Transcript

00:00 Hi, welcome to our dosage calculation video series.

00:04 Now in this portion, we're gonna take a look at what you've learned from about ratio and proportion and talk about how it actually applies to medication dosages.

00:13 So let's do a quick review from our other portions.

00:16 Alright, a ratio represents just a relationship between two numbers.

00:21 Now there's my favorite Schnauzer in the world, Harley.

00:24 Remember that's 3 tennis balls to 4 Harleys, which I can hardly imagine living with 4 of her but we've got 3 to 4.

00:32 We take that same relationship, rewrite it as a fraction, that's 3/4, with 3 being the numerator, 4 being the denominator.

00:42 Now we take the same thing and you would write it as the proportion. We've got 3:4.

00:47 Each one of those three examples are communicating the same thing just using different symbols.

00:54 So proportions represent two ratios or fractions that are equal.

00:59 Proportions are solved by multiplying the means, the numbers in the middle, and the extremes.

01:04 So we've color coded for you here just as a quick reminder.

01:08 We've got the extremes, they're in that kind of pinkish color and you've got that means that are in the flesh colors.

01:14 Remember, always double check your work.

01:17 So when you get what x equals, you wanna go back and plug it into the formula to make sure your answer is correct.

01:24 Again, even in practice, I make sure to have someone else check my math just to be extra sure.

01:30 An extra safeguard to make sure I'm giving an appropriate dosage to my patient.

01:35 Okay, so let's take one acetaminophen.

01:38 Now this one you may know by the brand name of Tylenol but acetaminophen extra strength, 500 mg per tablet.

01:46 So we know that one tablet has 500 mg. That's no different than 3 tennis balls and 4 Harleys. 1 tab, 500 mg.

01:57 Now you turn that into a fraction: 1 tab, that's the numerator, 500 mg is the denominator.

02:05 Okay, now I know you're thinking, "Wow, this is kind of moving slow." It always will in the beginning with me because I know the anxiety that's attached to math.

02:15 So I wanna make sure you're really solid on this concepts as we move through the next steps.

02:20 Now the order reads acetaminophen po 750 mg every 6 hours.

02:28 You have acetaminophen 500 mg/tablet.

02:33 Okay, acetaminophen po, that means per os, it stands for the Latin "by mouth" so that's what po means.

02:42 750 mg is the amount the physician has ordered of Tylenol or acetaminophen they should receive every six hours.

02:52 Now you might often see "q" instead of the word "every", you might see a lower case Q.

02:57 That also means every or each six hours.

03:00 So this is what the physician wants, 750 mg every six hours.

03:06 What I have on hand is 500 mg per tablet. So 1 tab equals 500 mg.

03:15 So how do you solve ratio problems? Well, hopefully these steps look familiar to you.

03:20 You identify the known ratio and the unknown ratio.

03:24 You set up the proportions, cross multiply and solve for x then check the answer by plugging the result into the unknown ratio.

03:32 Remember the unknown ratio is the ordered amount by the physician.

03:37 The known ratio is the medication that we have, remember? 1 tablet has 500 mg.

03:43 We're gonna try and figure out how many tablets it takes to make the unknown ratio, the 750 mg.

03:50 Now I know you can probably do that math in your head but that's why we pick an example like this to show you how and what the process is.

03:59 So it's not so much can you do the math in your head once you didn't understand the process as we walk through it. So we're gonna try it with x.

04:06 First of all, you set this up 1 tab is 500 mg, I'm trying to figure out how many tabs equal 750 mg.

04:16 I'm gonna multiply the extremes and then the means that involves cross multiplication.

04:22 So you -- we always try to put the x on the left side, just take that for what it is, it helps keep things in order.

04:29 So we put the 500x on one side of the equation equals 750.

04:35 Now we're gonna solve for x. X needs to stand by itself.

04:39 So in that step, we always divide the equation on both sides by the number that's in front of the x.

04:46 So 500x divided by 500, 750 also divided by 500.

04:53 Whatever I do to the left side, I need to do exactly the same thing to the right side.

04:58 Now the x that's remaining is x equals 1.5.

05:03 Now 500x divided by 500 is 1x but you can always just write x, you don't have to put the 1 in front of it.

05:11 Now we've got 500 into 750, and we've got 1 and 1/2 times.

05:17 So x equals 1 and 1/2. Now stop and think for just a minute.

05:22 First of all, before we check our work, does that make sense? With a tablet, could I come up with 1 and 1/2 tablets? Yes. That's reasonable.

05:33 Can I come up with 1.134567 tablets? No. I can't break a tablet down to those small amounts.

05:41 I can do a half a tablet but I can't do tiny hundreds of a decimal place of a tablet.

05:47 Now if I was figuring out IV rates, that I can get down very precise depending on the type of pump that I have available.

05:55 If it's a liquid measurement, I can use a cup, a little medicine cup that goes up to 30 ml.

06:01 So I can do it pretty closely by 4 or 5 ml by 5 ml.

06:06 If I need a more precise liquid measurement, then I would draw the liquid up in a syringe at whatever the right amount of units are that I can do that with.

06:16 So you always to think, "Hey, what format is the medication in? And does this make sense to give one and a half tabs?" Absolutely.

06:24 Now, that fifth step is to always check your work. So go back and plug x back in.

06:31 So you'll see we have 1 tab divided by 500, 1 and 1/2 by 750.

06:36 And we've plugged 1 and 1/2 in instead of where x was. We do the cross multiplication.

06:42 We come up with 1 times 750 equals 1 and 1/2 times 500 exactly.

06:48 They're both 750 and 1 and 1/2 times 500 is also 750 so we know that the safe dosage is 1 and 1/2 tabs of acetaminophen for this patient.

06:59 How often? Right, every 6 hours. Good job. 1 and 1/2 is the correct dose for our patient.

The lecture Dosage Calculation: Tablets – Ratio and Proportion (Nursing) by Rhonda Lawes is from the course Dosage Calculation (Nursing).

1. 4.5
2. 2
3. 3.5
4. 5
1. 0.5
2. 1
3. 1.5
4. 2
1. 2
2. 1
3. 3
4. 4

### Author of lecture Dosage Calculation: Tablets – Ratio and Proportion (Nursing) ### Customer reviews

(1)
5,0 of 5 stars
 5 Stars 5 4 Stars 0 3 Stars 0 2 Stars 0 1  Star 0