Some concerned pharmacists have advised Nigerians on the correct ways of using antibiotics, while warning of the dangers of indiscriminate use of same. The experts spoke on Friday at an event organised by the ST. RACHEAL’S Pharmaceutical Nigeria Ltd. to mark the 2019 World Antibiotics Awareness Week in Lagos.
They advised on the correct ways of using antibiotics, stressing that testing and prescription of the medicines, among other guidelines will help to guard against antibiotics resistance and associated health conditions that may arise from the indiscriminate consumption of antibiotics.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the 2019 WAAW is from November 18 to November 25. Commenting, Prof. Oyinlola Oduyebo of the Department of Medical Microbiology and Parasitology, College of Medicine, University of Lagos (UNILAG), said
“There is an urgent need for people to handle antibiotics with care.
Also, do not take leftover antibiotics; ensure you finish your antibiotics prescription instead of remaining and using it another time.
Many people have the habit of using what remains of the antibiotics they had used earlier; it is dangerous.
According to her, when antibiotics are prescribed, its aim is to tackle a particular organism, hence, one needs to run a laboratory test to determine which organism is causing the ailment before taking any antibiotic.
So, when antibiotics meant to be taken for five days are taken for three days, it is dangerous; also, if one feels better after three days, that means the diagnosis for making prescriptions for that particular drug was not so accurate.
“It also means that the antibiotics were not needed in the first instance. The proper thing to do in treating infection is to target the organism causing that infection and this is first by subjecting the patient to clinical diagnosis through a laboratory test to find out what is causing it.’’
She said that other reasons why drugs should be handled with care include avoiding drug resistance and adverse body reactions.
“Indiscriminate consumption of antibiotics without an accurate diagnosis, strict adherence to prescriptions can cause drug resistance and even damage vital organs in the body.
You may take the antibiotics that may not be suitable for the condition, your body type, drugs combination or dosage and this can cause adverse reactions. Such adverse conditions may include organs failure and even death,’’
Also, Mr Akinjide Adeosun, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, ST. RACHEAL’S Pharmaceuticals Nigeria Ltd., urged Nigerians to preserve the longevity of the array of antibiotics.
“The fundamental human right can be breached if we do not preserve the potency of the antibiotics we have today. The 1946 WHO’s Constitution defines the right to health as the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health.
Consequently, there is a need to increase global awareness of antibiotic resistance and to raise awareness about the fatality of preventable and treatable respiratory tract infections.’’
Adeosun, who is a Licenced Pharmacist, said that the effectiveness of antibiotics and the elimination of resistance could be encouraged by the right diagnosis and application of antibiotics.
According to him, good hygiene, sanitation, correct dosing of antibiotics, renewed fight against counterfeit and substandard antibiotics as well as stoppage of self-medication of antibiotics can help improve the effectiveness of antibiotics and eliminate resistance.
“Also, we will be helping the world in fighting the war against antibiotic resistance, thereby improving clinical outcomes and the life expectancy of antibiotics,’’
Adeosun urged Nigerians to stop self-medication and take the full dose of high-quality antibiotics when prescribed by doctors and dispensed by pharmacists.