I have been practicing medicine now for 42 years and I am still using Amoxicillin, a penicillin family (called beta lactam) antibiotic, for respiratory infections in children, with great success. Amoxicillin became available in the 60s as I recall, as a better form of penicillin. I have personally prescribed a river of Amoxicillin, the pink bubble gum stuff, as the mommies say.
So why do journalists declare another “crisis” related to resistant bugs? Because that’s what journalists do and a crisis makes news.
I suppose I would be better off ignoring these anxious panty waists, but instead they irritate me.
Little secret, I have horses and when they get infections of all kinds, the vet gives them good old penicillin.
When I ask him why he still uses Penicillin, he says–BECAUSE IT STILL WORKS.
Enuff said? The resistant staph problem is because of our excess use of antibiotics in kids. Simple.
However to think that the agricultural use of antibiotics is a source of big problems is to ignore the evidence.
We must be wary and on the watch for resistant bugs, but I can’t make a case for eliminating antibiotics for ag use. Not now.
For example, resistant staph has been around for a long time, but nothing, nothing seems to be evolving from that and there is no evidence that it is because we give cows and pigs antibiotics.
As for some super bugs that have been seen in India, here’s some news. I am not prepared to believe it is the end of the world for us. Antibiotic use in feed lot situations can be justified based on the negative effects of not using them, just like I can justify use of pesticides and herbicides and Genetically Modified more resistant and productive crops.
The Indian bug thing is in the context of medical tourism, which is a self selected sample of susceptible people. It is new, we need to be wary but not do anything that would have negative consequences. The Indian Super Bug is not the issue–antibiotics in animal feed is not the cause of the Indian Super Bugs.