- Do all of our loved ones & friends KNOW ?
- Note: Taken from Health Sciences Institute e-Alert – Melissa Young – 5/21/18
- Dear Reader,When your doctor prescribes you an antibiotic just to be “on the safe side,” you may think that taking it can’t hurt.Unfortunately, it can… a whole lot!
I’m not referring to what we already know about the overuse of antibiotics contributing to the deadly rise of superbugs.
Nope, I’m talking about these drugs causing actual excruciating pain that can feel as if razor blades are poking your back, belly, and sides.
That’s what kidney stones feel like. And if you’ve ever experienced one on the move, you know just what I mean!
Now, some new research out of the University of Pennsylvania has found a link between taking certain types of antibiotics and a significantly higher risk of developing this agonizing condition.
Even worse, that danger is greater for kids — and the younger they are, the higher the risk.
Experts keep saying that the giant rise in the number of kidney stone cases — a whopping 70 percent increase during the past three decades — is still a mystery. But it looks as if we can now identify a very clear cause of this phenomenon — as well as a way to try to put a lid on it.
Stoned on antibiotics
They say that people don’t remember pain for the most part — but the kind caused by kidney stones appears to be another story!
Dr. Gregory Tasian, the pediatric urologist at Penn who led this new research, points out how kidney stones used to be a problem mainly for middle-aged men. Now, however, they’re striking younger and younger people.
So, building on prior research that found that those more prone to stones had “shifts” or alterations in their gut bacteria, Tasian and his team focused on the likeliest explanation — antibiotics, which kill both the good and bad bugs in your body.
They analyzed two decades of health records for millions of adults and kids in the UK, focusing specifically on those who had suffered attacks of kidney stones.
And they found that certain classes of oral antibiotics — namely sulfas, cephalosporins, fluoroquinolones (which include Cipro and Levaquin), nitrofurantoin, and ones known as “broad-spectrum” penicillins — were linked to a significantly higher risk of kidney stones.
Compared to subjects who didn’t take any antibiotics, sulfa drugs were found to double the chances of developing kidney stones, and taking penicillin upped the risk by almost 30 percent!
And while the likelihood of developing stones due to these meds is highest for up to six months after a course of antibiotics, the researchers found that the risk can stick with you for several years!
The problem is that you can’t always say no to antibiotics, which can save lives when used properly.
But for a long time now, these drugs have been given out more like they’re Life Savers candies for the slightest sniffle or sneeze. In fact, the rise in kidney stones actually parallels the increase in antibiotic prescriptions!
As the researchers noted, around one-third of the antibiotics given to kids are totally unnecessary. And as I told you a few months ago, a study from the Carolinas HealthCare System found that the other group for whom antibiotics are being way over prescribed is… you guessed it… seniors!
So, from the youngest to the oldest patients, it looks like all you have to do is show up at a doctor’s office and — bingo! — you’re on a course of antibiotics just to be on that “safe side”!
I know that it’s difficult to question your doctor, especially if you’ve been seeing him for a long time. But it’s possible that these two questions could save you or a child in your family from a horribly painful ordeal:
#1 If you’re prescribed an antibiotic and don’t have a bacterial infection, ask your doctor why it’s necessary. You might be surprised at how easily your doc will simply say “Never mind.”
#2 If you truly do need an antibiotic and it happens to be one that promotes kidney stones, ask if you can take another type. Many times, powerful drugs such as Cipro are handed out on a one-size-fits-all basis to save the trouble of taking a culture.
And as a general rule for avoiding kidney stones (regardless of whether you’re taking an antibiotic), make sure that you’re drinking enough water, especially during the soon-to-arrive hot weather!
To Staying Stone-Free,
“Oral antibiotics may raise risk of kidney stones” Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, May 12, 2018, Science Daily, sciencedaily.com