Antibiotic Arsenal

Antibiotic Arsenal: A List Of Common Antibiotics And Their Types

Antibiotics play a crucial role in treating bacterial infections, offering a targeted approach to combat harmful bacteria in the body. They act as superheroes, selectively targeting and inhibiting bacterial growth while sparing healthy cells. These medications are available in various forms, including tablets, injections, and creams.

Key Concepts: Minimum Bactericidal Concentration (MBC) And Minimum Inhibitory Concentration (MIC)

Antibiotic actions hinge on two key concepts: Minimum Inhibitory Concentration (MIC), the lowest concentration preventing bacterial growth after 24 hours, and Minimum Bactericidal Concentration (MBC), the concentration reducing bacterial density significantly. Judicious antibiotic use is crucial to curb drug-resistant bacteria.

Responsible Use Of Antibiotics

Antibiotics should never be self-prescribed. Even if symptoms improve after a few doses, the full course must be completed. Specific antibiotics target particular bacterial strains, emphasizing the importance of accurate diagnoses before prescription. Avoiding unnecessary antibiotics is crucial to prevent bacterial resistance and potential serious side effects.

When Antibiotics Should Be Avoided

Consulting a doctor is necessary if a prescribed antibiotic fails to improve the condition. Antibiotics are ineffective against viral infections, and their misuse can lead to bacterial resistance. Serious side effects and the possibility of the emergence of resistant strains highlight the importance of adhering to a healthcare professional’s guidance.

Popular Antibiotic Types And Their Uses

  1. Penicillin: Widely used to treat bacterial infections by preventing bacterial cell wall formation, penicillin is effective against strep throat, pneumonia, and skin infections. Some bacteria have developed resistance, leading to combinations with other drugs.
  1. Tetracyclines: This broad-spectrum class inhibits bacterial protein synthesis, addressing respiratory, skin, and urinary tract infections. Side effects include gastrointestinal distress and photosensitivity.
  1. Cephalosporin: Blocking bacterial cell wall formation, cephalosporins treat various infections. Different generations exhibit varying efficacy against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria.
  1. Quinolones: These antibiotics interfere with bacterial DNA replication, effectively treating urinary, gastrointestinal, and respiratory infections. Overuse can contribute to antibiotic resistance and may cause side effects like tendinitis and tendon rupture.
  1. Lincomycin: By halting bacterial protein synthesis, lincomycin targets gram-positive bacteria, with potential side effects including vomiting and diarrhoea.
  1. Macrolides: Inhibiting bacterial protein synthesis, macrolides are used for skin, soft tissue, and respiratory tract infections. Side effects like nausea and vomiting may occur.
  1. Dicloxacillin: Effective against bacterial infections, especially MRSA, dicloxacillin prevents bacterial cell wall synthesis. Common side effects include allergic reactions and gastrointestinal symptoms.

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