In August of 2015, CBS Sports came out with its All-Suspension NFL team. That’s a complete team made up of players suspended either for a game or a season. Tom Brady was captain. Recently the Food and Drug Administration came out with an all-star suspension team of its own, and this one is led by Cipro.
Cipro and other synthetic fluoroquinolone antibiotics are vital for battling life-threatening infections such as hospital-acquired pneumonia. Problem is (again!) they’re overused for infections such as sinusitis, simple urinary tract infections and acute bronchitis that may be viral, not bacterial, and shouldn’t be treated with ANY antibiotic. Or, if they are bacterial, can be treated with nondrug therapies and an antibiotic with fewer side effects.
The FDA has issued a statement saying potential risks associated with fluoroquinolones -- tendonitis, tendon rupture, central nervous system effects, peripheral neuropathy, alterations in heart rhythm, phototoxicity and hypersensitivity -- are worth it only when the meds are attacking a super-tough infection or saving a life. So what are your alternatives if you have acute bronchitis, a UTI or sinusitis?
Recommendations from the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, for sinusitis include saline nasal irrigation, steam, decongestants and OTC pain relievers to ease sinus pain.
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Recommendations from the American Academy of Family Physicians for simple UTIs include antibiotics such as fosfomycin, nitrofurantoin and trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole.
Recommendations from AAFP for acute bronchitis include rest, taking a cough medicine for a dry cough (but don’t suppress a cough that brings up mucus) and taking a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory such as ibuprofen.
Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of “The Dr. Oz Show,” and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer and Chair of Wellness Institute at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, tune into “The Dr. Oz Show” or visit www.sharecare.com.