The Pediatric Forum |

Caffeine Consciousness

William A. Primack, MD
Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2004;158(11):1089-1093. doi:10.1001/archpedi.158.11.1092-a.
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The observation of Savoca et al1 that greater than 100 mg of caffeine may increase blood pressure in African American teens adds caffeine to the long list of iatrogenic substances that are associated with hypertension in teens. The most common ones are oral contraceptives; drugs of abuse such as nicotine, cocaine, and amphetamines; and prescription medications such as corticosteroids.

The accompanying editorial2 comments that 100 mg of caffeine is equivalent to 3.9 cans (1330 mL) of soda. As the Table shows, this estimation is generally incorrect. Physicians should be aware of the caffeine content of commonly ingested foods and medications. For example, soda contains 0 to 16 mg of caffeine per 100 mL, and coffee may have as much as 70 mg of caffeine per 100 mL. A No-Doz tablet (Bristol-Myers Squibb, New York, NY) has 200 mg of caffeine.

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