Treating Kids with Acute Appendicitis without Surgery?

In a small group of kids (102,  ages ranging from 7-17) who presented with acute, uncomplicated appendicitis families chose whether the patient would immediately have laparoscopic surgery or begin antibiotic therapy. Of these cases 37 chose antibiotics, and 65 surgery. After one year, 76% of those taking antibiotics did not need surgery, experienced fewer disability days and lower medical…

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Animal Antibiotics and Children’s Health

The American Academy of Pediatrics has taken a stand against the use of nontherapeutic antibiotics in animals. This report describes how the use of antibiotics as growth stimulants in livestock contributes to strains of resistant organism and potential infection through the food supply. Children are the most vulnerable to these infections. Physicians are urged to encourage families to…

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Antibiotics Still Drastically Overprescribed

Analysis of two large national databases reveals that physicians order antibiotics for about 60% of patients who present with a sore throat--yet only about one in ten is caused by a pathogen that responds to an antimicrobial agent. For bronchitis, 73% of cases result in an antibiotic prescription--but the problem never responds to the medications.…

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Antibiotics No Help to Most Coughs

Commonly used antibiotics are of little help in adults with coughs. More than 2000 adults who complained of a cough were randomly assigned to either get the antibiotic amoxicillin or a placebo for a week. Overall, the antibiotic group had no better relief than the placebo group, including those over 60 years of age. Indiscriminate use…

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Antibiotics and IBD in Kids

According to a retrospective study of more than one million children in the U.K., kids exposed to common antibiotics early in life experience an 84% higher risk of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Those exposed in the first year of life had more than fivefold the risk. The later the exposure, the lower the risk. The…

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Doc, Do I Need an Antibiotic?

 “Doc, don’t I need antibiotics?” is a frequent question heard by many physicians. Some of the most common problems – like colds, sinus infections, urinary tract infections, bronchitis – cause many patients to miss work and feel miserable. The patients assume that they should be taking an antibiotic. What they don’t know is that an…

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Waiting It Out is the Best Policy for Colds

According to a randomized, controlled trial, antibiotic treatment does not improve the sniffles and stuffiness (called acute rhinosinusitis) that often accompany a cold. Disease-specific quality of life as measured by the Sinonasal Outcome Test (SNOT-16) did not vary between antibiotic or placebo groups over a 10-day study period. Remember, most colds are caused by viruses,…

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Probiotics: A Possible Treatment for Mastitis

Mastitis in lactating women is fairly common, often caused by drug-resistant staphylococci. Spanish researchers have tested treatment with Lactobaccilli-based probiotics and traditional antibiotics. This randomized, prospective study of 251 women with mastitis showed promising results. The probiotic group reported better resolution and less pain after 21 days, and did not discontinue breast-feeding as often as the…

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Antibiotic Resistance is Real

New results of several studies show that patients who received antibiotics for respiratory or urinary infections had more than twice the risk for developing bacterial resistance within the first couple of months compared to those who did not take antibiotics.Their risk of becoming resistant to antibiotics declined over time, but was still elevated as long…

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Bad Antibiotic Information on Twitter

Have you ever had a question about symptoms or medications? Do you go to the internet to find answers? Researchers from Columbia University analyzed more than 1000 tweets on Twitter in an effort to see what kind of information was being shared about antibiotics. Not surprisingly, some tweets offered to share medications with friends, asked what…

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