Eastern Mediterranean University (EMU) Dr. Fazıl Küçük Medicine Faculty academic staff member Asst. Prof. Dr. Mümtaz Güran released a statement on “Antibiotics Awareness Week” regarding the usage of antibiotics and antibiotics resistance.
Since the invention of Penicillin, antibiotics have saved millions of lives, becoming one of the most popular drugs in medicine. In recent years antibiotics resistance and side effects have become two important research topics after the unregulated and unnecessary use of antibiotics. Asst. Prof. Dr. Güran’s statement on Antibiotics Awareness Week is as follows:
The Importance of Antibiotic Awareness Week:
Antibiotics resistance is one of the most important problems in the field of health today. This week aims to raise awareness about the problem and minimize wrong antibiotic usage by arranging a range of activities throughout the world.
What Exactly is the Antibiotics Resistance Problem?
To understand the magnitude of the antibiotic resistance problem, we must be familiar with what antibiotics are. Antibiotics are drugs used for the treatment of or protection against bacterial infections. In other words they have no effect on infections like flu caused by microorganisms such as viruses. The term antibiotic resistance describes situations where the effect of antibiotics on bacteria decreases or is completely lost because of changes in bacteria. Therefore, antibiotics treatment becomes unsuccessful in infections caused by resistant bacteria. The antibiotics resistant bacteria are easily able to spread therefore can easily lead to other infections that are difficult to treat. Therefore, antibiotics resistance is one of the most important health problems of today as previously easily treated infections can become a risk to public health
What Are the Factors That Cause Antibiotic Resistance?
Antibiotics resistance is fundamentally related to inappropriate antibiotics use. Taking more or less than the required dosage or most importantly using antibiotics in situations where it is not needed precipitates antibiotic resistance. This is also applicable to antibiotics usage in the livestock industry which indirectly leads to the increase of infections caused by resistant bacteria in humans.
What Is the Scale of the Problem in the World and TRNC?
Today, antibiotics resistant bacteria clones can cause problems all over the world. They can be especially problematic in developing countries due to living conditions and nonprescription sales. There are countries where the rate of resistant bacteria is at a very serious level where pandemics have been reported and many patients have died. In addition to health problems, this situation can also lead to economic problems. Because there is a lack of data on antibiotic resistance in our country it is not possible to fully perceive the scale of the problem. However limited scientific research carried out without surveillance data and the fact that nonprescription sale was only forbidden last year points to the problem being at a serious level. To think that we are not affected by a global health problem which is seriously trying to be combated would be optimistic.
What Can Be Done To Prevent The Escalation of the Problem or to Solve It?
Firstly, the fact that there aren’t many newly developed antibiotics is making resistance a more serious problem. Therefore in both humans and livestock, antibiotics use must be deliberative and clever. The public, doctors, vets, pharmacists and law-makers all have a part to play. Patients mustn’t take nonprescription antibiotics and always take antibiotics under the control of their doctor. Doctors and vets must prescribe antibiotics according to the correct procedure. Pharmacies definitely must not sell antibiotics to patients without a prescription. A laboratory infrastructure must be set up to join global webs that watch antibiotic resistant bacteria and carry out scientific studies. Agricultural and livestock regulations should prevent the use of antibiotics. Most importantly, a national plan and combat program should be developed with experts in the field.