Antibiotic options for Staph
Some Staph infections may not need an antibiotic and get better on their own. Though for serious infections, your Doctor will likely prescribe an antibiotic.
Antibiotics can be taken orally, topically or intravenously (IV), depending on the type of antibiotic. IV antibiotics can be administered for six weeks or more depending on what type of infection you have. Intravenous antibiotics may also be used to treat Staph infections around the eyes or on other parts of the face. More serious and life-threatening infections (typically MRSA, a type of Staph) include using intravenous antibiotics such as Vancomycin.
If the correct antibiotic is prescribed, infection relief can occur very quickly. If you are prescribed antibiotics, be sure to take it on schedule for as many days as your doctor directs you, even if you begin to feel better. It’s important to know that misdiagnosis and improper use of antibiotics are common with Staph and other infections.
Many doctors will prescribe antibiotics based on their clinical experience or by trial and error, not on actual testing of the type of bacteria you have.
Why do antibiotic susceptibility tests help you get the right antibiotic?
When using antibiotics, your best treatment outcome includes getting a susceptibility test (or an antibiotic sensitivity test). This test will determine what antibiotics actually work against your infection. This test will guide your doctor to the best antibiotic choice.
What’s the best antibiotic choice for Staph?
As mentioned above, the most accurate way to prescribe an antibiotic uses a microbial susceptibility test to identify the best antibiotic for a particular person’s infection. The type, location and severity of infection along with factors such as pregnancy, drug allergies, or health risks must also be taken into account when selecting an antibiotic.
Commonly prescribed Staph infection antibiotics can include but are not limited to:
- Sulfa drugs
Fortunately, Staph is generally easy to treat and antibiotics prescribed will generally work.
The misuse of antibiotics and resistant Staph
The overuse of antibiotics over many years has resulted in the ever growing population of antibiotic resistant bacteria, such as MRSA. Antibiotics have become less and less effective with each passing year. Such misuse has been created by doctors prescribing antibiotics for colds which are caused by viruses, not bacteria. The commercial livestock industry has overused antibiotics which are commonly used to fatten cattle so they can go to market quicker. These two factors have greatly contributed to antimicrobial resistance in bacteria like Staph.
While antibiotics are often necessary and lifesaving, I believe they should be used with prudence. Antibiotics have a history of being misused and over-used which has contributed largely to antibiotic resistant bacteria like MRSA, VRSA and others.
Statistics are now showing that using antibiotics for a Staph infection can double your chances of getting MRSA. Using an antibiotic that doesn’t work well only makes these bacteria more resistant. I’m not saying this as a scare tactic, but I want to inform you of the risks involved with antibiotics and if you’re going to use them, make sure you get tested.
I would consider alternative approaches in conjunction with antibiotic treatment if an infection is not serious or life-threatening. If the infection is serious or life-threatening, I would look at using these other approaches in conjunction with antibiotic treatment. Talk with your Medical Doctor, Infectious Disease Doctor or ideally Alternative Medicine Doctor about using antibiotics as a “backup” option if at all possible.
Little discussed antibiotic side effects
Most antibiotic drugs have significant negative side effects, which can include: diarrhea, hives, yeast infections, upset stomach, nausea, vomiting, depressed white blood cell counts (immune cells), rashes, and more. Consult your physician if you are pregnant or breast feeding. Many people can not take antibiotics because of the severe side effects.
If you are pregnant you should also strongly consider alternatives to antibiotics because of health issues correlated to the developing child.
Parents should be especially cautious using antibiotics on children as I believe they can, especially with overuse, contribute to many chronic illnesses. Why? Antibiotics will kill off many of the “good” or friendly bacteria inside the intestines along with the “bad” bacteria of the infection. This disruption of the natural bacteria balance in the body can cause intestinal problems but importantly, they also weaken the body’s immune system, thus increasing the chances of getting re-infected later.
You have an entire army of bacteria that work to keep you safe and healthy, and antibiotics kill both the bad and the good bacteria leaving your body compromised.