First Covid Wave has caused a severe antibiotic misuse
The massive soar in the sales of antibiotics in India is estimated by experts to be caused by the use of these drugs to treat relevantly mild and moderate virus cases. Washington University study states that over 216.4 million extra doses of antibiotics through September 2020.
Researchers state that this was not appropriate as antibiotics are usually used to treat bacteria and not viruses like Covid. Such increased use may be risky and can cause increased cases of drug-resistant infections and it becomes harder to therefore treat such minor illnesses.
Research showed that even though antibiotic doses sold in 2020 were lesser than those of the previous 2 years, it was much higher when only adult doses were considered, which had increased by 4%. Researchers also noted that due to this surge, there has been a dip in cases of diseases like malaria and chikungunya.
There were notable increases in the sales of doxycycline and faropenem, commonly used to treat respiratory infections. Overall in high-income countries, the increase in sales of such drugs was quite noticeable.
It is estimated that Covid-19 has likely contributed to 216.4 million excess doses of antibiotics for adults and 38 million excess doses of azithromycin for adults in 2020 from June through September.