Antibiotics don't help in sinus infections

Community Leader
Registered: 07-25-2000
Antibiotics don't help in sinus infections
Thu, 02-16-2012 - 12:47am

TUESDAY, Feb. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Treating a sinus infection with antibiotics doesn't speed recovery, new research shows.

"We did a randomized clinical trial among adults with a clinical diagnosis of acute sinusitis, and found no benefit from the antibiotic compared to the placebo for the treatment of acute sinusitis," said study author Dr. Jane Garbutt, a research associate professor of medicine and pediatrics at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

Still, one in five antibiotic prescriptions for adults in the United States are written for sinus infections, according to the study.

"Acute sinusitis is a miserable disease. People want something to make them feel better, and there are not very many treatment options, so patients ask their doctors for antibiotics. But, we think most of the time, acute sinusitis is a viral infection, so antibiotics won't help," said Garbutt.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 08-24-2009
Tue, 02-21-2012 - 4:38pm

I have actually had this argument with a doctor.

I went to an urgent care clinic and was diagnosed with a viral sinus infection. Then in the next breath he offered to write me a prescription for antibiotics.

"Oh, I must have misheard you," I replied. "I thought you said it was a viral infection."

"It is."

"Well, then, antibiotics won't do any good, right?"

"No, but most of our patients want them anyway."

I declined the prescription, waited out the sinus infection, and never went back to that clinic again. :smileyfrustrated:

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-03-2012
Sat, 03-03-2012 - 1:35am

I deal with this problem everyday.

Community Leader
Registered: 07-25-2000
Sat, 03-03-2012 - 5:13pm

Good for you! I know there is a lot of pressure on doctors to give medications, and not just antibiotics, either. It seems people often do feel like their doctor has not earned his/her fee unless they walk out with a prescription. I personally try to avoid taking medication as much as possible because so many of them have unpleasant (to say the least) side effects.