Asthma : too much of antibiotics prescribed to children

Health 11 September, 2017


Published the 11.09.2017 at 14h46


Keywords :


Physicians should specify more antibiotics to children with asthma than their peers, even when those medicines are useless, is concerned about a study presented this weekend at the congress of the European Respiratory Society held in Madrid (Spain). Over-use all the more troubling in that it promotes the emergence of resistant bacterial strains.

The researchers of the Erasmus university (the netherlands) believe that a lack of knowledge of the disease asthmatic or a non-compliance with the recommendations is at the origin of this misuse. “The symptoms of this chronic disease can be confused with those of a respiratory tract infection, said Dr Esmé Baan, in charge of the work. However, the international recommendations and national clearly say that antibiotics should not be given in the case of exacerbation of asthmatic disease, as this is rarely linked to a bacterial infection. “

Requirements massive and unreasonable

The research team relied on the follow-up of 1.5 million british children, including 150 000 children with asthma, as well as 375 000 small Dutch, of which 30 000 asthmatics. Of large cohorts, which have allowed researchers to compare the prescription of antibiotics in these children, but also between the netherlands and Great Britain. The doctors make it clear that these two countries of the european Union to adhere to the same recommendations of treatment for asthma.

It appears that in these two countries, children suffering from this inflammation of the bronchial tubes are 1.6 times more likely to receive antibiotics than other children. Amoxicillin is the treatment most prescribed in Great Britain and the netherlands.
On the other hand, scholars have noted that the prescription of antibiotics in the general population is two times higher among our neighbours across the Channel as the country of tulips.

Worst among the big consumers ?

However, the trends are similar in the two countries. The researchers thus suggest that it is very likely to find this over-prescription of antibiotics in other countries. And knowing that the netherlands have a rate of use of antibiotics the lowest in Europe, the doctors say that the situation could be worse in countries that consume the most antibiotics that are in Spain, Portugal or France.

In fact, our country occupies the 3rd place on the podium of the largest consumers of antibiotics behind Greece and Romania. In 2015, 786 tons of drugs to the human health have been sold. All the experts are nevertheless unanimous : between 30 and 50 % of all prescriptions are unnecessary. “The inappropriate use of antibiotics may be harmful for patients at the individual level, but also for the population as a whole, because it becomes increasingly difficult to control the spread of infection hardly treatable” was raised by Dr. Baan.

“These drugs should only be used when the bacterial infection is clearly identified, as in the case of pneumonia, for example,” insisted the doctor, adding that he ” had to discourage doctors from prescribing unnecessary treatments, otherwise we run the risk of encountering more of multi-drug resistant infections in the future. “