Overuse/misuse of medicines is the most common malpractice that is carried out globally despite knowing the adversities associated with it. The most common medicines that are misused are of course the antibiotics. Most of us know that these are the currently used treatments for most of the ailments and prescriptions from doctors are filled with antibiotics. We use these drugs on our own when there are seasonal changes as they bring about with them the common illnesses of flu, allergies or sore throats with fever.

Some people use these medicines on the advice of others who experienced the same illness as them and use these medicines on their advice without getting a checkup from the doctor or a thorough examination. Others use these drugs by going through old prescriptions they have kept. The misuse of these medicines results in a number of adversities, for example, resistance to antibiotics is the most common problem.

The resistance has led to the development of bacteria that require combination of antibiotics to treat a single disease, resulting in other side effects, due to combination therapy. We should therefore be careful regarding selection and duration of use of antibiotics.

Unnecessary Prescribing In Common Respiratory Infections

According to research, 90 to 95 percent of  infections that are contracted by the individuals are ear or sinus infections and these infections are viral or low-acuity bacterial infections but studies show that more than half of patients in the United States are taking anti-bacteria medicines for common ailments such as colds, flu and bronchitis, that are all caused by viruses.

The net result is that the irrational use of antibiotics against bacteria has led to the development of resistance against the medicines, requiring more potent and higher doses of antibiotics to treat common bacterial infections and also we are losing the war against these antibiotic-resistant bacteria due to their rapid spread running ahead of production of new antibiotics to fight them.

Inappropriate Prescribing In Outpatient Practice

A new study found that 45 percent of patients that come in the ambulatory care setting to the hospitals are suffering from  respiratory tract infections (RTIs) and are inappropriately prescribed antibiotics for these seasonal illnesses. Antibiotic interventions are often not required for these respiratory tract infections which mostly  include bronchitis, acute pharyngitis (sore throat) and upper RTI. Undue and excessive use of antimicrobials is also associated with rise in healthcare costs and the emergence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

Number Of Patients Admitted With Antibiotic-Resistant Infections Is Rising

According to the U.S. Department of Health Services, the second most common infections in the body are that of urinary tract, accounting for almost 8.1 million visits to healthcare providers each year. Urinary tract infections are usually community-acquired infections and are on the rise due to bacterial resistance to antibiotics. Overuse of antibiotics in both humans and farm animals has led to overall prevalence of antibiotic resistance, so what may have been effective in the past, may no longer work to fight infection today.

Multi-Resistant Skin Bacteria

Many skin bacteria that are genetically related to each other have also developed resistance to several different antibiotics and the rise in resistance is due to their rapid transmission within and between hospitals in Sweden.

Rise In New Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria In Chicago And Illinois

Klebsiella pneumoniae carbapenemase, is a type of antibiotic resistance most often found in variants of Klebsiella pneumonia. These bugs cause infections with high mortality rates and are resistant to the most commonly used antibiotics. In a survey of Chicago-area healthcare facilities, researchers have found that the incidence of KPC-producing bacteria is rising. These bacteria naturally live on the skin and in the mouth and intestines and can cause pneumonia and urinary tract infections. A survey was carried out between 2009 and 2010 and showed that the number of healthcare facilities in Chicago that reported infections with the bacteria increased by 30 percent, and the number of patients who tested positive for the bacteria nearly tripled.

Drug Resistant Bacteria Common For Nursing Home Residents With Dementia

Most of the patients with advanced dementia are residents of nursing homes. These patients are sometimes carriers of resistant strains of bacteria. A new study found that one in five patients with advanced dementia, that are residents of nursing homes, harbor strains of drug-resistant bacteria .10 percent of these resistant strains of bacteria have shown resistance to as many as four or more classes of antibiotics.

High Prevalence Of Drug-Resistant MRSA Found In Nursing Homes

Most of the invasive diseases such as bloodstream infections, abscesses, and pneumonia are caused by community-acquired strains of methicillin resistant staphylococcus aureus (CA-MRSA). (Methicillin is an antibiotic to which staphylococcus aureus is resistant, that’s why named as MRSA). This resistant strain has high prevalence in nursing home residents because these residents are admitted directly from hospitals and CA-MRSA is ubiquitous in hospitals.

More than one quarter of residents of 26 nursing homes in Orange County, California carry community-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (CA-MRSA), which transmits more easily, and may cause more severe and complicated infection than MRSA.

We should restrict our use of antibiotics regarding common ailments, as resistance is a major and serious problem and new antibiotic development is an arduous task requiring myriad of time and money.