The Growing Concerns About Self-Medication Using OTCs

Doctors and other medical practitioners have expressed their concern regarding the availability of over the counter UTI treatment. According to these doctors, antibiotic medications about 10 years ago, could never be bought without the doctor’s prescription.

Today, more than 200 of these drugs are now sold over the counter and they are apprehensive about the possible consequences of the indiscriminate availability of these drugs.

Doctors are concerned that the overuse and misuse of these over the counter UTI treatment will result to bacterial resistance to UTI antibacterial medications.

Eventually, if the urinary tract infection develops into a bladder or kidney infection despite the antibiotic medication they procured from drugstores, then it has finally happened. The sufferer’s body no longer responds to antibiotics because the body has already developed resistance to the bacterial strain.

According to one health expert, the sale of OTC antibiotics for serious infections soared by 800% since FDA approved the medication for over the counter access in 1990. This is said to be a clear indication that there is drug overuse and misuse.

Today, antibacterial resistance is now a global problem. Self medication has become rampant, a lot of patients no longer respond to basic medicines prescribed. This is exactly why, it is important for those who go into self medication to consult their physicians before taking any form of drug treatments.

Urinary tract infections that are in the advanced stages are treated by doctors with antibiotics. However, the doctor has to analyze the patient’s urine by studying the results of the urinalysis.

He will also determine the patient’s personal and medical history including the health habits and lifestyle. Only then will the doctor be able to determine the type of antibiotic to prescribe.

There are even cases when the doctor has to examine x-ray or ultrasound visuals or use a cystoscope to determine if there is a blockage in the urethra. If the doctor is fully satisfied with his analysis and diagnosis, it is only then that any one of the following drugs will be prescribed since he will deem it to be the most appropriate medication to treat the UTI:

Trimethoprim – an antibacterial drug that acts as a prophylaxis as well as medicaton for urinary tract infections.

Trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole – used as treatment for UTI caused by any of the following microbes: Escherichia coli, enterobacter species, Morganella morganii, proteus mirabilis, Klebsiella species, and Proteus vulgaris.

Amoxicillin – This drug is said to be treated for class B bacterial infection caused by organisms described as susceptible.

Ampicillin – an antibiotic that is said to inhibit the third and final stage of synthesis that takes place in the cell wall.

Nitrofurantoin – common antibiotic used to treat UTI caused by E coli, although it is not one of the more popular strain being used.

You will probably note from the list above that each antibiotic is different but with similar uses. There are drugs chosen by the doctor as the suitable prescription based on its prophylactic use.

However, only the doctors know this, and we as layman or unlearned about medical jargon and uses, do not have the expertise to understand the real meaning of prophylaxis, other than what we will gather from its dictionary meaning. Neither can we determine, when does it becomes appropriate to take over the counter UTI treatment with prophylactic capacity.