A new study claims that only 8% of the antibiotic prescriptions given in 2016 were clearly justified.
The remaining numbers are quite worrisome. 28% were granted without a document diagnosis that would justify the decision, 36% may have been necessary but they were not mandatory and 23% where outright unnecessary.
Official statistics from 2016 note that one in six adults and one in 10 children received an unnecessary antibiotics prescription at least once in their life.
The lead author of the study has declared during an interview that the consumption of unnecessary antibiotics will bolster pathogens that are currently easy to threat.
Antibiotic resistance continues to grow around the world and the mindless consumption of antibiotics seems to be the prime factor that drives up the numbers. Doctors are advised to avoid antibiotic prescriptions if they are not really needed.
The major problem is represented by the fact that in many cases the treatment may be demanded by the patients themselves or their relatives. In some cases the patients hope that the treatment would increase the recovery speed or prevent possible complications that are unlikely to occur in the first place.
The over-prescription of drugs has become a major issue in the recent years. The problem becomes even worse when we are looking at opioids. Opioids are powerful painkillers that can match the strength of morphine in some cases. They are usually prescribed in order to alleviate severe pain. One of the side-effect is a state of blissful euphoria that can last for several hours. This has led to a large number of individuals that ask for opioids prescriptions in order to use the drug for recreational purposes or sell it to other people.
Some US states are trying to fight the trends by imposing clear restrictions on how a treatment should be given. In most cases the pathogen that comes in contact with an antibiotic will change a little. As time passes it will become stronger and the efficiency of the drug will be reduced.
According to the CDC more than 23,000 Americans die each ever after contracting antibiotic-resistant infections.
Brad is a former Senior Fellow at the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism at Brandeis University, is an award-winning travel, culture, and parenting writer. His writing has appeared in many of the Canada’s most respected and credible publications, including the Toronto Star, CBC News and on the cover of Smithsonian Magazine. A meticulous researcher who’s not afraid to be controversial, he is nationally known as a journalist who opens people’s eyes to the realities behind accepted practices in the care of children. Brad is a contributing journalist to Advocator.ca