Antibiotics are important drugs.It would be difficult to overstate the benefit penicillin and other antibiotics have played in treating bacterial infections, preventing the spread of disease and minimizing serious complications of disease.
But there is also a problem with antibiotic medications. Drugs that used to be standard treatments for bacterial infections are now less effective or don’t work at all. When an antibiotic drug no longer has an effect on a certain strain of bacteria, those bacteria are said to be antibiotic resistant. Although there are well over 100 antibiotics, the majority come from only a few types of drugs.
TYPES OF ANTIBIOTICS
Penicillins such as penicillin and amoxicillin,Cephalosporins such as cephalexin, Macrolides such as erythromycin (E-Mycin),clarithromycin(Biaxin),and azithromycin(Zithromax),Fluoroquinolones such as ciprofolxacin (Cipro), levofloxacin (Levaquin), and ofloxacin (Floxin), Sulfonamides such as co-trimoxazole (Bactrim) and trimethroprim (Proloprim),Tetracyclines such as tetracycline(Sumycin, Panmycin) and doxycycline(Vibramycin),Aminoglycosides such as gentamicin(Garamycin) and tobramycin (Tobrex).
Jason G. Newland, MD, medical director in charge of patient safety at Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City explains that “what we often cast aside is the fact that antibiotics kill good bacteria along with the bad. They also carry the potential of setting off harmful adverse reactions. In other words, they’re serious medicine that shouldn’t be taken casually. Yet many people “continue to cling to the notion of ‘why not take something if there’s even a chance that it will make me better?, when in reality there are big risks.
According to Belinda E. Ostrowsky Antibiotic resistance is still an epic problem. The overuse of antibiotics especially taking antibiotics even when they’re not the appropriate treatment promotes antibiotic resistance. Antibiotics treat bacterial infections but not viral infections. For example, an antibiotic is an appropriate treatment for strep throat, which is caused by the bacterium Streptococcus pyogenes. It’s not, however, the right treatment for most sore throats, which are caused by viruses. People who want quick relief from symptoms, regardless of the cause of illness, may pressure doctors for antibiotic prescriptions. People may take antibiotics purchased abroad or via the Internet for self-diagnosed illnesses. People may take antibiotics that are even leftovers from a previous prescription which becomes detriment to their health.
The side effects associated with antibiotics aren’t trivial. They range from merely annoying (mild rashes, minor skin irritations, or a short bout of diarrhea) to potentially life-threatening reactions (anaphylactic shock, for example). These side effects include, but aren’t limited to:
Bad rash, Bad sore throat, Respiratory difficulties, Nausea and vomiting, Diarrhea,Stomach pain, Swelling of joints, Stevens-Johnson Syndrome (a rare skin disorder most associated with sulfonamides such as bactrum), Retinal detachment, Compromised kidney function (associated with fluoroquinolones such as Cipro, Levaquin and Avelox), Widespread pain (with symptoms similar to fibromyalgia),Tendinitis Heart.