Antibiotics: Give Your Eyes and Ears Once!
Antibiotics are the easy wonder walls every single person nowadays leans on to. But the shocking report published in the 'Journal of the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society' should be an eye opener. As per the report, nearly one third of all antibiotics prescribed for hospitalised children globally were intended to prevent potential infections rather than to treat disease.
A large proportion of these preventive, or prophylactic, prescriptions also were for broad-spectrum antibiotics or combinations of antibiotics, or were for prolonged periods, which can hasten the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria and drug-resistant infections.
“This pattern and high rate of prophylactic prescribing indicates a clear overuse of antibiotics,” said study author Markus Hufnagel, DTM&H, of the University of Freiburg in Germany. “Hopefully, our study results will help to raise awareness among health professionals about appropriate prescribing of antibiotics in children,” Dr. Hufnagel said.
Additional education for clinicians and improved implementation of current guidelines for antibiotic use to prevent surgical infections are needed, Dr. Hufnagel said. More in-depth guidelines that address the use of prophylactic antibiotics for a broader range of medical conditions than current guidelines do are also needed, as well as efforts to communicate these guidelines to health care providers and to analyse how the recommendations are used.
Key takeaways from the report:
A survey of hospitals in 41 countries suggests antibiotics are often inappropriately and excessively prescribed for hospitalized children worldwide.
Nearly a third of all antibiotics prescribed for these children were for preventive, or prophylactic, use, rather than to treat disease, the survey found.
The use of broad-spectrum antibiotics and combinations of antibiotics was also high, raising concerns about increased risk for the development of antibiotic resistance and drug-resistant infections.