TRANSFER OF DEADLINE Wed, 09/10/19 | 22:15 | First
In fact, fluoroquinolone antibiotics are good drugs that can save the seriously ill. But because they work so well, they are also millions of times prescribed patients with simple bladder infection or harmless sore throat. Even a few pills of these antibiotics can harm patients for life.
In focus: the active substance fluoroquinolone
Thomas Ludwig of Constance experienced this. Due to ear pain, he was prescribed an antibiotic. After a few days he complains of dizziness, difficulty with orientation and pain in the muscles and Achilles tendon. Running is hard for him. Reason for complaint: Antibiotics with the active substance fluoroquinolones. They include preparations called ciprofloxacin, norfloxacin, moxifloxacin or levofloxacin.
Diagnosing side effects is difficult
Since its introduction in the 1980s, fluoroquinolones have been generated due to a number of possible side effects in criticism. General practitioner Stefan Pieper knows patients from all over Germany who suffer from the side effects of fluoroquinolone treatment. Many of his colleagues would not associate pain and mental disorders with antibiotic therapy. "The big problem is that a prescribing doctor is rarely the same doctor who has to hear those complaints afterwards," Pieper says.
Study: 140 deaths from adverse reactions
In the report of the scientific institute, AOK numbers were first calculated for Germany. Accordingly, approximately 3.3 million patients were taking fluoquinolone antibiotics in 2018. About 40,000 were serious side effects – that's the estimate. Thus, 140 patients died from side effects.
The Bundesinstitut warned in the 2019 Rote-Hand-Brief
In April 2019, all doctors in Germany were warned in a letter from the Federal Institute for Medicines and Medical Devices. The so-called red letter. This is the first warning of "long-term and possibly irreversible side effects" of all fluoroquinolones.
Therefore, preparations should only be administered "after careful assessment of the benefits and risks in each case".
Alerts have been issued in France and the US
From Stefan Pieper's point of view, this warning comes too late. "It would be a limitation to the indications much earlier, or even in some areas, to ban the use of this drug."
Because since 2008, serious side effects have been known. In 2015, there were specific warnings in France, a year later in the US. However, in Germany in April 2019, a comprehensive warning is given before using these antibiotics.
The Federal Bureau rejects the allegations
The Federal Bureau of Medicines and Medical Devices writes on request plus or minus, a person would have been sufficiently informed about safety in the past. Refers to the manuals and articles they have published for individual preparation on their website. Doctors are asked to translate information from these letters. Controls, will it happen, but no.
Risk: Main artery rupture
Stephan Kurz also addresses the topic of antibiotic side effects. At the German Heart Center in Berlin, you know how dangerous they can be. Because by taking over, the risk of rupture of the main artery increases. In the event of a life threat, the affected may bleed internally within a short time.
To show that there is a detectable link between aortic treatment and fluoroquinolone, an anesthesiologist is currently evaluating patient data from all over Germany. Findings that already exist. Because international studies are already proving this.
Author: Pia Busch
Editor: Peter Schneider
From 10.10.2019 10:46