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Clinical Calculations: Introduction

Introduction to Clinical Calculations

How much math do I need to know?

  • To perform clinical calculations, you need to be comfortable with adding, subtracting, multiplying, and dividing fractions and decimals.
  • You need to also know how to reduce fractions to their lowest terms.
  • Higher level math, such as algebra or calculus, is not needed.


What do I need to learn?

  • In this course, you will learn how to correctly calculate the dose to give clients of oral (by mouth) medications, injections, and intravenous fluids and medications.
  • The prescription written by the primary health care provider is typically in grams, milligrams, micrograms, or units. You will have on hand capsules, tablets, powders, and liquids.
  • Clinical calculations involve a conversion from the primary health care provider's prescription to the item that you have on hand to ensure that you give your client the correct amount of medication.


Layout of the text:

You will see that the content of the text is divided into the following modules. You will refer to your instructor's schedule for the semester to determine when you need to study the content of each module.

  • Module 1: Review of Basic Mathematics
  • Module 2: Dimensional Analysis
  • Module 3: The Metric System
  • Module 4: Oral Medications
  • Module 5: Parenteral Medications
  • Module 6: Divided Doses and Reconstituted Medications
  • Module 7: Intravenous Medications
  • Module 8: Critical Care Intravenous Medications
  • Module 9: Pediatric Medications
  • Resources


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