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Thread: Antibiotics question!

  1. #1 Antibiotics question! 
    Forum Freshman
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    I heard that certain bacteria can develop a resistance to antibiotics.
    Is that true?
    And if it can is it because of overuse of antibiotics?
    Or to reformulate my question should I use antibiotics only when absolutely needed, because if I use them frequently chances are they aren`t going to work as effectively?


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  3. #2  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard i_feel_tiredsleepy's Avatar
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    Well bacteria are constantly evolving and transfering genetic material between each other, because their populations are so high, sometimes you can treat someone with antibiotics and 1/10000 bacteria is resistant, and then eventually the population will become almost all resistant just from selective pressure.

    The answer to the second question is yes, you should only use them when necessary, overuse of antibiotics is a big problem and is the cause of MRSA and other nastry antibiotic resistant bacterial strains. Although, it is still rather unlikely for a regular person to acquire an antibiotic resistant strain outside of a hospital setting (where they tend to be propogated) except for some exceptions like antibiotic resistant TB which has started to become very common.

    The possibility of the antibiotics not working on you properly aren't that likely, it's just when you take into consideration the thousands of people who are taking antibiotics unnecessarily the chances for resistance to arise is greater. An even greater concern is when people do not use their complete dosage, often long enough treatment with an antibiotic will still kill off partially resistant bacteria (if a few exist in a population in an infection), but if you stop treatment too early the infection will come back except now it will be composed of resistant bacteria.

    Overall, I'd say do what your doctor thinks is best at all times, because you may not be able to determine when you should be using antibiotics or not.


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  4. #3  
    Forum Sophomore CShark's Avatar
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    The 'development' of MRSA and VRE (Methicilin resistant staph aureus and Vancomycin resistant E.coli) is the direct result of doctor's giving in to the modern day myth that drugs can make the boo-boo go away. When someone has a cold, they think they need antibiotics to make it better. In reality the common cold is a viral infection which means antibiotics are useless. This is especially true for new parents: baby has an ear infection so we need drugs.

    The medical community began sounding the warning bell in the late 70's on this, yet most MD's still wore out their script pads. It is not an impossible scenario to see something down the road that may make the bubonic plague look like a cold sore. There has been a dramatic increase in the number of cases of the two aforementioned infections in hospitals, as well as the better known C.dificile, which is pretty much fatal. For those of you who do not speak francais, dificile means difficult.

    Scary, isn't it!
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