Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Wheezing After Early-Life Antibiotics: Blame the Underlying Chest Infection More Than the Antibiotics

07.08.2008
Children who are given antibiotics in their first three months often wheeze at 15 months of age. However, this wheezing is probably more due to the presence of chest infections than to the use of antibiotics.

These were the key findings of research carried out by researchers in New Zealand, and published in this month’s edition of Clinical and Experimental Allergy.

This work built on the fact that the prevalence both of asthma and the use of antibiotics have risen since the 1960s. Using antibiotics reduces a person’s exposure to bacterial infections and disturbs healthy populations of bacteria in the body, and the question is whether this then leaves a person more prone to develop asthma.

The researchers recruited a group of 1,000 babies at birth and contacted the parents at 3 months, 15 months and then yearly until they were four years old. Each time, they collected data about chest infections, asthma and their use of antibiotics. The data showed that by the time the children had reached 15 months old, nearly three quarters (72.1%) had been given antibiotics. In addition 11.8% had asthma, 39.6% had eczema and 21.2% had a recurring itchy scaly rash.

The researchers then looked at the data to see whether there was any indication that the antibiotics caused these effects and found that by adjusting for the effects of chest infections the association between antibiotics and wheezing was very much reduced.

"Our results strongly suggest that the reason that some children who have been given antibiotics appear to develop asthma is because they had a chest infection and the symptoms of the chest infection in young children can be confused with the start of asthma,” says Julian Crane, a senior study investigator at the Wellington Asthma Research Group in Wellington, New Zealand. “Antibiotics are given to treat the respiratory condition and rather than being a cause of asthma, as has been previously suggested, they are used for chest infections which can indicate an increased risk of asthma, or be mistaken for it.”

One of the underlying issues is that it is often difficult to distinguish between asthma and chest infections at an early age. Consequently some infants who are given antibiotics to cure a chest infection may really have been suffering from the early symptoms of asthma.

“Our data still leaves open the possibility that antibiotics may affect the development of eczema and itchy skin by four years and allergic hypersensitivity by 15 months,” says Crane.

Jennifer Beal | alfa
Further information:
http://www.wiley.co.uk

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht World first: Massive thrombosis removed during early pregnancy
20.07.2017 | Universitätsspital Bern

nachricht Therapy of preterm birth in sight?
19.07.2017 | Universitätsspital Bern

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Manipulating Electron Spins Without Loss of Information

Physicists have developed a new technique that uses electrical voltages to control the electron spin on a chip. The newly-developed method provides protection from spin decay, meaning that the contained information can be maintained and transmitted over comparatively large distances, as has been demonstrated by a team from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute. The results have been published in Physical Review X.

For several years, researchers have been trying to use the spin of an electron to store and transmit information. The spin of each electron is always coupled...

Im Focus: The proton precisely weighted

What is the mass of a proton? Scientists from Germany and Japan successfully did an important step towards the most exact knowledge of this fundamental constant. By means of precision measurements on a single proton, they could improve the precision by a factor of three and also correct the existing value.

To determine the mass of a single proton still more accurate – a group of physicists led by Klaus Blaum and Sven Sturm of the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear...

Im Focus: On the way to a biological alternative

A bacterial enzyme enables reactions that open up alternatives to key industrial chemical processes

The research team of Prof. Dr. Oliver Einsle at the University of Freiburg's Institute of Biochemistry has long been exploring the functioning of nitrogenase....

Im Focus: The 1 trillion tonne iceberg

Larsen C Ice Shelf rift finally breaks through

A one trillion tonne iceberg - one of the biggest ever recorded -- has calved away from the Larsen C Ice Shelf in Antarctica, after a rift in the ice,...

Im Focus: Laser-cooled ions contribute to better understanding of friction

Physics supports biology: Researchers from PTB have developed a model system to investigate friction phenomena with atomic precision

Friction: what you want from car brakes, otherwise rather a nuisance. In any case, it is useful to know as precisely as possible how friction phenomena arise –...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Closing the Sustainability Circle: Protection of Food with Biobased Materials

21.07.2017 | Event News

»We are bringing Additive Manufacturing to SMEs«

19.07.2017 | Event News

The technology with a feel for feelings

12.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

NASA looks to solar eclipse to help understand Earth's energy system

21.07.2017 | Earth Sciences

Stanford researchers develop a new type of soft, growing robot

21.07.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Vortex photons from electrons in circular motion

21.07.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>