Overuse of medicines hinders treatment

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Hyderabad: Rampant overuse of medicinal drugs in the country is a major reason behind increase in anti-microbial resistance (AMR) among patients, said health care experts.

Experts said that large-scale antibiotic resistance is being observed during treatment process, which in turn is increasing infection rate among patients. They added that 25% of healthcare-associated infections in patients admitted for prolonged time are caused by antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

According to the experts, AMR occurs when antimicrobials (antibiotic and anti-fungal drugs), commonly used to treat infections, stop working as the bacteria becomes resistant to the drug. India carries one of the largest burdens of drug-resistant pathogens while being a massive consumer of antibiotics worldwide.

“Bacteria, which could earlier be cured in a day or two now takes at least five days. This means that in some cases, there is either no cure or cure that can only be achieved through very few antibiotics,” said Dr J Anish Anand, consultant, internal medicine at Apollo Hospitals, Jubilee Hills.

He added that it has become very common to see blood and urine culture reports with antibiotic resistance.

“It is very essential that we curb AMR as infections spread easily among patients in healthcare facilities”, said Dr Iyer Ranganathan N, senior consultant, microbiology and infectious diseases, Global Hospitals, Hyderabad at the multi-city master class organised by Becton Dickinson (BD), India.

Doctors said that the main cause of developing resistance is the irrational use of antibiotics without the prescription of a medical practitioner for inadequate periods of time, which in turn leads to bacteria’s increasing ability to counteract the drug.