How to Treat Infections with Less Antibiotics

Taking antibiotics for the relatively few days might work just as well to take them for a week or two, at least for some pneumonia. This would have the advantage of exposing patients to less antibiotics and save money.

to take antibiotics for a week:

For years, doctors commonly prescribe antibiotics for a week to 10 days. Patients were warned that if they stopped prematurely infection could return with a vengeance.

A shorter course of antibiotics

A new study JAMA Internal Medicine compared two regimens. Spanish patients hospitalized with pneumonia took the antibiotic prescribed for at least five days. Those in the study group discontinued the drug after five days if they no longer have fever or severe symptoms. The other group continued treatment with antibiotics for 10 full days.

benefits of lower Antibiotics:

There was no difference in the outcome and no difference in the length of stay in the hospital, so there was no reason to continue with the course more long. It should be noted that not all patients randomized to the study group qualified. About 30 percent still had fever or bothersome symptoms of pneumonia on the fifth day, and those people continued to take antibiotics to their doctors had prescribed.

Other studies have found that urinary tract infections also respond to shorter duration of treatment. It remains to be seen whether other infections could benefit from new mantra: “. Short is better”

JAMA Internal Medicine online 25 July, 2016

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