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Frequent antibiotic therapy in children is life-threatening

Is Antibiotic Treatment Of Children Beneficial?

If children receive two or more antibiotic treatments per year, this increases the likelihood of failure to continue antibiotic treatment by 30 percent.

A recent study by an internationally renowned University of Oxford found that two or more antibiotic treatments in children massively increase the likelihood of failure of further antibiotic administration. The results of the study were published in the English-language journal "British Journal of General Practice".

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Unfortunately, parents often insist on treating infections in their children with antibiotics. This increases the risk of drug failure and contributes to the development of resistant strains of bacteria. (Image: rvlsoft /

Over-prescribing antibiotics causes problems

In their study, the researchers investigated the dangers of over-prescribing antibiotics in cases of frequent respiratory infections such as coughing, sore throat or lice. Therefore, preschool children receiving more than two doses of antibiotics are more likely to find that subsequent antibiotic treatment is less effective and that additional treatment, including hospitalization, is needed.

Parents often seek unnecessary antibiotic treatment

The study included the analysis of electronic health records of more than 250,000 preschool children. Researchers suspect that antibiotic resistance may be responsible for the results, and have also pointed to a lack of awareness of the limited effectiveness of antibiotics in many pediatric infections. This causes parents to unnecessarily require social treatment.

Antibiotics are not effective in all infections

In particular, newborn parents should understand that antibiotics are not effective in every infection. Parents should trust their family doctors if they advise that antibiotics are not needed. The unnecessary use of antibiotics could help increase resistance to these important drugs, which has become a global problem, researchers say. Although antibiotics are life-saving medicines in bacterial infectious diseases, cases where children with infection actually need antibiotics are relatively rare. (As)


  • Oliver van Hecke, Alice Fuller, Clare Bankhead, Sara Jenkins-Jones, Nick Francis, Michael Moore, Chris Butler, Kay Wang: Antibiotic Exposure and 'Failure to Respond' to Subsequent Respiratory Infections: An Observational Cohort Study of UK Preschool Children , in the British Journal of General Practice (Inquiry: 08/13/2019), British Journal of General Practice