self medicating may lead to deadly antimicrobial resistance..
A report by Lee Yen Mun, the Star, Wednesday 17 October 2012
The tendency of Malaysians to pop antibiotics as a quick fix to a range of ailments can lead to antimicrobial resistance that can kill. Health Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai said the use of antibiotics among Malaysians was rising and the number of cases of antimicrobial resistance or AMR has increased steadily.
He warned that injudicious prescription of antibiotics can cause AMR, meaning that the drug may no longer provide remedial effect against the micro-organism which caused the sickness concerned.
This meant that the patients would face greater health costs, possibly even risk death, when their bodies failed to respond to the standard treatment of antibiotics when it was truly needed, he said after opening the Annual Scientific Meeting on the Antimicrobial Resistance 2012 here yesterday.
" A study in 2008 involving 82 public clinics and 17 private clinics showed that the antibiotic prescription rate for upper respiratory tract infection was 46.7% among private primary clinics and 27.8% in public primary care clinics," Liow said.
" in our country, we are experiencing an increase in certain AMR cases, namely the extended-spectrum beta lactamase and the acinetobacter ( bacteria types).
My advice to patients is to not demand for antibiotics unless the doctors have diagnosed the need."
Malaysian Pharmaceutical Society president Datuk Nancy Ho said the profession had seen cases of patients trying to "self - medicate" by requesting for antibiotics based on what they have read on the internet.