Medicines are not used routinely in . Medicines that stop diarrhea (antidiarrheals) can help with your symptoms. But do not use antidiarrheals if you have a high fever or bloody diarrhea. And do not give antidiarrheals to children.
are not needed for most cases of food poisoning, but they can be helpful in severe cases. On the other hand, antibiotics can make some kinds of food poisoning worse by causing toxins to build up in your body. Doctors try to use antibiotics only when they are really needed, because overuse can lead to in bacteria and other organisms.
Types of food poisoning that may be treated with medicines include:
- Botulism, which usually requires the botulism antitoxin and close medical care.
- Listeriosis, which in pregnant women is treated with antibiotics to prevent infection of the or newborn. Babies with listeriosis may also receive antibiotics.
- Toxoplasmosis food poisoning, which in pregnant women is treated with antibiotics. For more information, see the topic Toxoplasmosis During Pregnancy.
- Shigellosis, which may be treated with antibiotics. But some types of Shigella bacteria are not killed by antibiotics. This is called . Because using antibiotics can make these bacteria even more resistant, mild cases of shigellosis are not usually treated with antibiotics.
For information on medicines and treating , see the topic E. Coli Infection.