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What are the Hidden Side Effects of Antibiotics?


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3/26/2015
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Doctors often prescribe antibiotics for your colds, flus, and countless other issues. But is this always a good idea? New research shows that there are some serious consequences.

Fox news reports on a new study concerning antibiotics. New research shows that too much consumption of antibiotics could possibly lead to diabetes.

Those who have taken certain antibiotics many times may be at a heightened risk of type 2 diabetes, according to the new research. Experts found that people in the study who had ever been prescribed two or more courses of specific types of antibiotics were more likely to be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes than people who had never been prescribed these antibiotics, or who had only taken them once.

Which antibiotics are they referring to?

The antibiotics studied came from one out of four categories: penicillins, cephalosporins, quinolones and macrolides.  

Researchers wanted to bring attention to the issue surrounding the overuse of antibiotics.

They said this is a red flag and shows that physicians should be more cautious before prescribing so many antibiotics. One of the complications of overuse of antibiotics is indeed diabetes.

What happens to people with type 2 diabetes?

Fox explains, “In people with type 2 diabetes, the cells of the body stop responding to the hormone insulin, which normally causes cells to take in sugar from the blood. People with the condition tend to have levels of sugar in their blood that are too high.”

How was the study conducted?

For the study, the researchers looked at a database of people in the United Kingdom. The experts examined the number of antibiotic prescriptions that were given to around 200,000 people with diabetes at least one year before the individuals were diagnosed with the disease.

Next the scientists then compared that total number with the number of antibiotics prescribed to 800,000 people who did not have diabetes, but were the same average age as the patients. The ratio of men to women in the two groups was also the same amount.

“The risk of type 2 diabetes in people who had been prescribed between two and five courses of penicillin increased 8 percent, compared with people who had taken one course of penicillin or none. In those who had been prescribed more than five courses of the antibiotic, the risk increased 23 percent compared with the one- or no-course group,” according to Fox.

There were more interesting results.

Experts found that among people who had been given two to five courses of quinolones, the likelihood of being diagnosed with diabetes increased by 15 percent, and it heightened 37 percent among those who had received more than five courses. But, the people in the study who had been prescribed a single course of antibiotics did not have an increased threat of developing type 2 diabetes, compared with those who had never taken antibiotics.

Dr. Yu-Xiao Yang, an assistant professor of medicine and epidemiology
at the University of Pennsylvania, commented on the study. Dr. Yang said,

“While our study does not show cause and effect, we think changing levels and diversity of gut bacteria could explain the link between antibiotics and diabetes risk.”



Category: Medical Malpractice


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