Antibiotics Unnecessary for Most Sinus Infections

Dr. Mukesh Patel says antibiotics shouldn't always be used for sinus infections.
1:36 | 02/14/12

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Transcript for Antibiotics Unnecessary for Most Sinus Infections
Well most cases of a key writing -- -- that present to primary care. Clinics. Are often not even due to bacteria that -- viruses so in many cases when a person presents with symptoms of sinus infection. Antibiotics are probably not even warranted in adults because it's a virus causing the infection and not a bacteria. In antibiotics will not have any activity against these viruses. When there are suspicions that it's a bacterial infection. There's been a lot of discussion for years about whether antibiotics. Are. Good or bad. And my opinion is always been that in people who don't have very serious symptoms to suggest. That they have bacterial infections that you probably shouldn't use antibiotics. I think many people err on the side of thinking that antibiotics probably will benefit their patients. But in many conditions such as -- -- -- scientists. There probably isn't a stronger role for antibiotics is there. Previously was thought the other thing that. I think is important is if people do want to prescribe antibiotics. For particular infection they should use antibiotics that have the narrower spectrum of activity. And what that means as you focus on the bacteria that you think are causing -- infection and not use an antibiotic that. Has activity against many other bacteria. Overuse of antibiotics can help breed resistance in bacteria and over time you lose their. The benefit of those and a body she might be prescribing.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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