resistance

This morning Anya complained that her ear hurt, so I took her to urgent care, where she was diagnosed with a double ear infection. This wasn't surprising, really. We're used to ear infections around here; even I kept getting them last year, and I'm not convinced my hearing is quite where it should be, actually. Anyway, what was surprising was the medication the P.A. prescribed. It wasn't amoxicillin - you know, the pink stuff in a big bottle you store in the fridge because it tastes better cold. I remember taking it all the time for ear infections as a kid. Daniel had several rounds of it last year before it quit working and he had to get tubes in his ears. Anya's been on it a few times, too, as recently as last November.

Not this time, though. According to the P.A., there are new recommendations out now to treat ear infections with a different antibiotic because there is so much resistance now to amoxicillin. She said there are pockets of the country with very high resistance to it; Denver, for example, has a rate of 80% resistance to amoxicillin. Yikes. The medicine Anya has to take (I can't remember the name and don't want to go look right now) is white and chalky, and has a base of amoxicillin with some other stuff added to kill a broader range of bacteria.

What do we do when this medication stops working? Ear infections are so common, it's no wonder there is resistance to the most prescribed antibiotic in the country. Anya will be fine. I could tell the medicine is working just a few hours after she took the first dose. But today has got me thinking about all those super-bugs and terrifying scenarios where the population is ravaged by terrible infections that no medication can stop. (Hmm, might have been a bad idea to rent the movie Contagion a few weeks ago...)

I think we could all use some fresh air and sunshine.

Comments

Jessi said…
When Brynna was getting so many ear infections, she was on a rotation. The first infection got Amoxicillin and the second got the white chalky stuff and the third got something else. Then back to the Amoxicillin. The idea was that since we had to keep treating, this would slow down her resistance to any of them.

Also, I'm pretty sure this is how the zombie apocalypse starts. :)
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