Otitis in children and antibiotics
Ear infections are one of the main reasons why children are administered antibiotics. According to some, ear infections are the most frequent cause of administration of antibiotics in children.
Many experts question the need for antibiotics to treat ear infections in a large number of children, they believe that most cases of otitis do not need antibiotics, and treatment can be done in other better ways.
Recently a research review of clinical studies to date, done by physicians experienced in infectious diseases, showed that antibiotics help only 1 in every 8 children affected by otitis.
In these studies in children with otitis were given either antibiotics or placebo. The results showed that in 81% of children receiving placebo, the otitis was treated. In children receiving antibiotics, showed that 94% of children were cured.
This suggests that the children who needed antibiotics when presented with otitis are very few and limited to 1 for every 8 children with otitis.
Allowing administration of antibiotics is dangerous. Germs that grow inside the ear can quickly develop resistance to antibiotics. So, if there is a true bacterial infection if administered antibiotics, bacteria are pushed to become resistant.
Should a real infection occur at a later time, then antibiotics are powerless to combat it.
Experts recommend as the administration of antibiotics should be done under very strict criteria. If infection occurs with no presence of pus in the ear drum, then the pain and fever presenting in children can be treated with antipyretics, analgesics and anti-inflammatory medications.
The existence of inflammation and pus supports the existence of bacterial infection and antibiotic treatment is recommended. But it should be noted as identified from antibiotics surveys to benefit only 1 in 8 children.
When doctors make a diagnosis of otitis without evidence of contamination by bacteria, they should wait even 48 to 72 hours before giving antibiotics. The re-assessment will indicate whether the problem will go away or if signs documenting an infection from bacteria. In such a case you will need antibiotics.
Most ear infections go away without intervention. The most common reasons that cause various infections are viral and antibiotics in these cases do not help.