Does Amoxicillin Help In Treating Cold (bronchitis)?
In spite of lots of evidence that the antibiotics are of no use against viral infections, still lots of doctor prescribe them – particularly amoxicillin –given for lower respiratory infection like bronchitis, even after excluding pneumonia. This is because a very few scarce research has proved that it may help, a little bit, in restricting the symptoms duration or severity.
The practice should change if the doctors follow the research that is published on Wednesday in journal Lancet. More than 2,000 patients diagnosed with bronchitis cause of chest congestion, coughs and symptoms related to cold that lasted for more than a week, were randomly given amoxicillin or placebos by the European researchers. They found that the antibiotic not only failed to cure or lessen the symptom faster than placebo, but lead to side effects as diarrhea, rashes and nausea.
About 29 % patients who were prescribed amoxicillin (amoxil), had these side effects, compared to 24% patient that were from placebo group. (If patients think that they are taking a good drug, even placebo has side effects).
The study authors stated that the duration and severity both were not notably affected by amoxicillin. The study did not include patients suffering from pneumonia – as the antibiotic treatment shows helpful- this was based on their breathing sound heard through stethoscope in their physical exam and also due to the fever that was persistent.
The researchers found no advantage to the antibiotic treatment. The patient who took the drug experienced worsening of the symptoms or getting a new one, as compared to patient who were prescribed placebos. That means, out of 30 patients treated with the antibiotic one will be benefited.
Dr. Paul Little from the University of Southampton in Britain who is a study author had stated that,” usage of amoxicillin to cure respiratory infections to the patient not having pneumonia will not help but can be harmful”.