As flu cases rise, IMA cautions against overuse of antibiotics | India News

NEW DELHI: The Indian Medical Association (IMA) has issued a note of caution against misuse of antibiotics as flu cases continue to soar in the country.
In a statement, the doctors’ body has said many people are taking antibiotics on their own to manage febrile illness (fever) and cough which can be due to the seasonal influenza. Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has said this year, Influenza A H3N2, a subtype of viruses that cause influenza (flu), is predominant and it is known to cause more hospitalisations than other influenza subtypes.
“Infection caused by H3N2 is self-limiting in most cases and people do not need high-end antibiotics to manage the same. But we often come across patients who have taken antibiotics like Azithromycin and Amoxiclav on their own. This is harmful and can cause drug resistance,” said Dr Narender Saini, chairman, IMA committee on antimicrobial resistance.
During the first and second waves of the Covid-19 pandemic also, Dr Saini added, one of the key crises was overuse of medicines including antibiotics.
In an advisory last year, ICMR had called upon doctors to avoid using antibiotics for conditions such as low grade fever and viral bronchitis among others. The health research agency has also advised doctors to follow a timeline while prescribing antibiotics.
For example, ICMR guidelines suggested that antibiotics should be prescribed for five days in case of community acquired pneumonia and eight days for hospital acquired pneumonia.
“A stop date should be planned and recorded in advance to ensure antibiotics are not given beyond the recommended duration,” the guidelines said.
Antimicrobial Resistance or AMR occurs when bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites change over time and no longer respond to medicines, making infections harder to treat and increasing the risk of disease spread, severe illness and death. Self-medication is another major reason behind rising AMR, say medical experts.
Recently, a multi-centre survey carried out by ICMR to spot the trend in antibiotic resistance across the country showed Acinetobacter baumannii, a gram-negative bacteria known to cause infection in blood, urinary tract and lungs among others, was resistant to high-end antibiotics.
The survey found 87.5% samples of Acinetobacter baumannii tested in 2021 were resistant to carbapenems which is a high-end antibiotic. This, the researchers said, limited the treatment option in individuals suffering from infection caused by the bacteria.

#flu #cases #rise #IMA #cautions #overuse #antibiotics #India #News

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button