PUBLISHED: 1:54 PM on Wednesday, June 7, 2006
Study Suggest Antibiotics Early in Life May Increase Asthma Risk
Use of even one course of antibiotics during the first year of life may increase the risk of asthma later in life, according to a recent study published in the March issue of Chest. The study also suggests there may be a dose-response relationship, the risk increasing with each additional course of antibiotics.

The study was conducted by Dr. Carlo A. Marra and colleagues at the University of British Columbia who felt that the increase of asthma in western countries during the last few decades has seemed to coincide with the increased use of antibiotics.

To perform the meta-analysis, the researchers identified seven studies that specifically examined the relationship between administration of at least one prescription for antibiotics in the first year of life and the development of asthma during 1-18 years of age. The study cohorts included 12,082 children and 1817 asthma cases. The investigators also studied data from five trials analyzing a potential dose-response relationship, which included 27,167 children and 3,392 asthma cases.

Co-author Dr. Fawziah Marra commented in a news release that it is possible to reduce the number of antibiotics infants receive because though antibiotics are commonly prescribed to treat upper respiratory infections, most of these infections are viral, for which antibiotics are ineffective.

Chiropractic has been proven to be very successful at significantly reducing asthma symptoms.