Antibiotics damage the intestinal flora

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Study: antibiotics drugs sustainably damage the intestinal flora in humans.

(09/24/2010) Antibiotics damage the intestinal flora, this has been known for a long time and has also been scientifically proven. However, the extent has so far been assessed far less strongly. Based on a study, scientists have now found that antibiotics that are relatively well tolerated can damage entire important bacterial populations.

Antibiotics are said to help patients recover from infections and destroy harmful bacteria. However, vital bacteria in the intestinal flora are destroyed at the same time. A healthy intestinal flora is extremely important for the human immune system. If the immune defense is severely disturbed, this can result in further, sometimes severe infections.

The gut is one of the most important but neglected organs of the human organism. The organ is not only responsible for the utilization of the food, but also plays an important role in immune defense. Over half of the vital immune cells are in the gut. Over 100 trillion bacteria are found in the intestinal flora. The majority live anaerobically, i.e. without oxygen, e.g. Lactobacilli, bifidobacteria, germs of the genus bacteroides, as well as the enterococci and the E. coli germs. The intestinal mucosa in turn feeds these useful bacteria. Lactic acid bacteria are very important. This type of bacteria fights pathogens and thus keeps the intestinal flora in balance. However, repeated use of antibiotic medication damages the intestinal flora to a far greater extent than previously thought.

A US study by Stanford University has now found that two consecutive timely intakes of antibiotics that are actually considered to be tolerable sustainably damage the intestinal bacteria in the digestive tract for several months. Thus, there is an increased risk of infection with other infections in this phase, which in turn are treated with antibiotics. This can lead to a serious cycle, especially since many doctors prescribe antibiotics far too often and practically unnecessarily.

Around 1,000 different types of bacteria are found in the gut of a healthy person. In a previous study, the researchers led by David Relman from Stanford University observed that the intestinal flora recovered relatively quickly in a few weeks after taking antibiotics. However, if the preparations are taken again within a short time, regeneration is much more difficult for the intestine.

Numerous stool samples from a total of three women were examined in the study. Within ten months, the subjects took the antibiotic ciproflaxin, which is actually considered to be tolerable, twice for 5 days each. During the first test run it was observed that the populations of around one third to one half of the intestinal bacteria disappear, while microbes flourished. After about a week, the intestinal flora in two women was normal again. However, in the third study participant it could be observed that the colonization of bacteria in the intestine was still significantly changed six months later.

In the second round of the study, after all three subjects took antibiotics again, the scientists found that the changes lead to permanent changes in the intestinal flora of at least two months. This is how the scientists sum up: "Repeated use of antibiotics seems to have an increasing effect
our inner microbial ecosystems, with possible harmful consequences ". (sb)

Also read:
Gut dysbiosis: With bacteria against bacteria
Alternatives to antibiotics from naturopathy
Doctors often prescribe antibiotics unnecessarily

Author and source information

Video: Restoring Gut Health After Antibiotic Use - Dr. Tom OBryan

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