Using certain antibiotics for early treatment of common colds could protect some kids from more severe infections.
(Mirror Daily, United States) – Early antibiotics could help with children’s respiratory infections according to a recent study. New information has shown that rapidly treating a cold with certain antibiotics could help children with increased risks of severe respiratory tract infections.
The standard procedure that doctors usually follow when it comes to routine viruses does not recommend the prescription of antibiotics but researchers have now found that, for children who are particularly vulnerable, a certain antibiotic called azithromycin can actually help prevent the development of a more serious illness.
The study recently published in the Journal of the American Medical Association has found that prescribing a high dose of azithromycin to children that have increased risk of respiratory tract infections early on when they are affected by a common virus can help stop the routine infection from progressing into a more serious respiratory illness.
This method is effective in cases of children that are more prone to respiratory infections such as wheezing. According to specialists, when these children catch a common cold it can rapidly progress into their chests and cause more severe conditions, out of which a very often one is wheezing.
And according to recent data, as many as one in every four children of preschool age suffer from recurring wheezing within the first six years of their lives. It seems that azithromycin can help reduce inflammation and kill viruses early on, which can in turn help lowering the risks of a child developing complications later. This makes it an ideal treatment for wheezing.
And the prevention of wheezing episodes at an early age is vital for children’s health according to the study’s lead author Dr. Leonard Bacharier, clinical director of allergy, immunology and pulmonary medicine at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. His research has found that children who were given the maximum dose of azithromycin as a response to the earliest symptoms of a cold responded better to wheezing prevention efforts.
The children that were given azithromycin had a 36 percent lower risk to develop a more severe respiratory illness as consequence of a common cold than kids who were given placebo. But doctors often treat recurring respiratory tract infections using a different approach. Many prescribe corticosteroids in an attempt to help open up the airways. However, according to Bacharier’s information, these drugs do not help much often times.
Antibiotics aren’t usually used in the treatment of common colds until the child is either very ill or has already been wheezing for some time. Bacharier explains his findings suggest that early use of the azithromycin in treating common viruses could be a better course of action.
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