Higher cumulative exposure to antibiotics may be associated with higher risk for the development of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD), according to research published in Lancet Gastroenterology & Hepatology.
This is not just a public health problem (Antibiotic Resistance), it is a medication safety issue. Antibiotic drugs can really cause harm by killing certain types of intestinal flora (bacteria), while leaving others types of bacteria and yeast unscathed. This changes the floral balance within the gut Microbiome in sometimes dangerous ways, and it appears to be dose dependent — meaning that the more often you take antibiotics the more likely you are to develop IBD at some point.
In my estimation, this is the first of what will likely become a broad array of diagnoses sometimes associated with antibiotic use. I suspect that most of the conditions likely to be associated with antibiotics will be autoimmune. Examples of autoimmune diseases are: Lupus (systemic lupus erythematous), Vitiligo, Graves Disease and Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, Psoriasis, Rheumatoid Arthritis, and more. In fact, there has already been evidence for a number of years that links Rheumatoid Arthritis to the growth of specific intestinal bacteria.
For anyone who has not heard about Functional Medicine, it is an elegant field of medicine that takes a much broader and more Holistic science based approach to human health and illness. The Institute of Functional Medicine (IFM) is a wonderful organization that trains doctors in this approach and is worth knowing about.
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Justin Groode MD | Patient Advocate Alliance, LLC