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Whoopsie! Actually, You SHOULDN’T Finish That Course Of Antibiotics

Story from: 2oceansvibe.com

You might be rolling your eyes at this, but a group of “eminent specialists” have once again turned medical advice on its head, suggesting patients don’t necessarily need to complete a full cycle of antibiotics.

Say whaaaat?!


This group of “specialists”, from prominent organisations that include Public Health England and the University of Oxford, have suggested that patients should only continue taking medication until they feel better, to avoid the overuse of drugs.

Thinking of all those times you could have gone out for drinks but didn’t because you hadn’t finished your course, even though you felt better?

Boo hoo. This is why I avoid medicine unless I get a weird infection or something.

Here are the deets from The Telegraph:

[I]n a new article in the British Medical Journal (BMJ), 10 leading experts said the public health message is not backed by evidence and should be dropped. They claim it actually puts the public at greater risk from antimicrobial resistance.

“Historically, antibiotic courses were driven by fear of under treatment, with less concern about overuse,” said lead author Martin Llewelyn professor of infectious diseases at Brighton and Sussex Medical School.

“The idea that stopping antibiotic treatment early encourages antibiotic resistance is not supported by evidence, while taking antibiotics for longer than necessary increases the risk of resistance.

“We encourage policy makers, educators, and doctors to stop advocating ‘complete the course’ when communicating with the public.”

So basically, we have been taking medicine based on what people think rather than what science has suggested? WHY DO PEOPLE LIE TO US?

Well, we have Alexander Fleming to blame. In his Nobel Prize acceptance speech in 1945, Fleming warned:

“If you use penicillin, use enough.”

However, the article from BMJ, based on studies, argues that:

[W]hen a patient takes any antibiotics it allows dangerous strains of bacteria to grow on the skin and gut which could cause problems later. The longer the course, the more the resistance builds.

In the UK, at least 12 000 people die from antibiotic-resistant bugs each year, experts estimate. Seriously though, this is why I don’t touch the stuff.

Other medical practitioners have come up saying that this study is, in fact, long overdue:

Prof Jodi Lindsay, Professor of Microbial Pathogenesis, St George’s, University of London, added: “The evidence for ‘completing the course’ is poor, and the length of the course of antibiotics has been estimated based on a fear of under-treating rather than any studies.

“The evidence for shorter courses of antibiotics being equal to longer courses, in terms of cure or outcome, is generally good, although more studies would help.”

Prof Mark Woolhouse, Professor of Infectious Disease Epidemiology, University of Edinburgh, said: “It is very clear that prescribing practices do need to change; there is every indication that current volumes of antibiotic usage are too high to be sustainable.

“We need to start to use antibiotics more wisely before it’s too late.”

Prof Peter Openshaw, President of the British Society for Immunology and Professor of Experimental Medicine, Imperial College London added: “Far from being irresponsible, shortening the duration of a course of antibiotics might make antibiotic resistance less likely.”

Now there’s some food for thought.

I guess that means your plans this weekend are on – only if you’re feeling better, though.

[source: telegraph]

This post is from 2oceansvibe.com. Click here to read the full text

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