Amoxicillin is a semi-synthetic antibacterial penicillin drug. According to some reports, this is one of the most commonly prescribed antibiotics for treating children. The drug was synthesized by «Beecham» British company scientists in 1960. After 12 years, during which clinical trials, this antibiotic became available for sale. It became second semi-synthetic penicillin drug after ampicillin, developed in 1961.
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Today we can surely say that the achievements of this antibiotic are huge: 42 years later antibiotic is still used throughout the world. The World Health Organization (http://www.who.int/en/) has included this drug in the list of essential medicines that are necessary for a healthcare system. Often pediatricians prefer the old but secure Amoxicillin. At the same time, there is an increase in a number of frustrated doctors who did not receive desired effect or, conversely, received an unexpected result.
In this article, My Canadian Pharmacy will try to understand whether expectations of patients who believe in Amoxicillin power are justified or not. Is this drug safe and effective?
Structure and Pharmacological Effect
The drug includes one single active substance: amoxicillin trihydrate, which is an ampicillin analog with modified formula.
Penicillins pharmacological effect is based on their ability to break sensitive bacteria cell wall synthesis.
The pharmacological activity spectrum is wide. Below you can see some of the microorganisms that are sensitive to the drug:
- aerobic gram-positive staphylococci and streptococci;
- gram-negative gonorrhea, E. coli, Shigella, Salmonella and Klebsiella pathogens.
Penicillinase and Amoxicillin, or When Antibiotics Won’t Help
Penicillins descriptions and comments give not a quite understandable term – penicillinase or beta-lactamase. Let’s try to understand pharmacology and the effect of this this mysterious substance on antibiotic effectiveness.
Penicillins have been used for almost 80 years. During this time, some kinds of “creative” pathogenic bacteria have learned to resist, synthesizing penicillinase – an enzyme of beta-lactamase group. It is able to destroy penicillin and cephalosporin antibiotics, which contain in their structure beta-lactam ring. As a result, drugs are completely inactivated and bacteria continue to exist.
Amoxicillin, as other penicillin antibiotics, is inactive against microorganisms that produce penicillinase. Non-sensitive bacteria include some strains of staphylococci, a lot of gram-negative organisms.
Penicillinase and Clavulanic Acid: Irreconcilable Enemies
The ability of a wide range of microorganisms to safely resist amoxicillin effect was discovered during clinical trials. British pharmacists of “Beecham” company-developer began an active search for an “antidote” against penicillinases, bringing to nothing antibiotics effectiveness.
In the late 70-ies, the solution was found. Clavulanic acid and some of its compounds have proved able to prevent enzymes destructive action. These substances strongly seize penicillinase forming a stable complex with them, and give the antibiotic opportunity to work.
Complex with clavulanate is able to affect a much greater number of pathogenic microorganisms. It should be emphasized that amoxicillin and a clavulanic acid combination is a new drug that is available under various trade names.
One of the most famous and so-called protected amoxicillin drugs is Augmentin, which is produced by «GlaxoSmithKlein» group. By the way, this company is a follower of the famous «Beecham» company, which developed this antibiotic and its complex with clavulanic acid.
All unprotected antibiotics containing only one component composition, remain vulnerable to beta-lactamase. Therefore, it should be once again noticed that hasty decision to start self-medication with antibiotics is unacceptable. Each group of antibiotics has its own characteristics that are important to consider. And the doctor can prescribe antibiotic that will bring relief.
Amoxicillin relates to drugs which are available in a variety of dosages and pharmaceutical forms. Companies, producing medicines, try to create their own, most “convenient” drug.
So, let’s try to understand what antibiotic form can be purchased online at My Canadian Pharmacy. The company sells the following forms of popular antibiotic:
- Children’s suspension in dosages of 125 mg and 250 mg;
- Pills or capsules of 250 mg, 500 mg, and 1000 mg;
It should be noted that this drug is a substance that is not able to keep its chemical and physical properties when dissolved. Therefore, the suspension is also produced in the form of powder or granules that are to be dissolved before use.
Indications for Use: What Does Amoxicillin Treat?
This antibiotic is indicated for the following pathological conditions:
- upper respiratory tract infections – sinusitis (sinuses inflammation), pharyngitis (throat disease), laryngitis (larynx and vocal cords inflammation);
- tracheitis (trachea inflammation), bronchitis (bronchi infection) and pneumonia (lungs inflammation);
- tonsillitis (tonsils inflammation) and otitis (a pathological process in the middle ear);
- antibiotic pills are prescribed for urinary tract and genital organs infections (acute and chronic pyelonephritis, cystitis, endometritis);
- a very specific disease – gonorrhea – is also treated with this disease;
- the drug is effective for skin diseases – erysipelas and impetigo, caused by streptococcal infection;
- the antibiotic is widely prescribed for intestinal tract diseases;
- Penicillins remain the drug of choice for meningitis treatment;
- antibiotics of this group are applied at listeriosis, borreliosis, and leptospirosis;
- it is also appointed at sepsis;
- Amoxicillin is a part of gastric and duodenal ulcer complex therapy.
Who Should Not Use Amoxicillin?
One of the major problems of medicine is lack of proper control over the release of prescription drugs. Until now, most pharmacies sell a lot of drugs without a prescription.
Often, patients buy antibiotics “from memory”, having once used this drug and received positive effect. Sometimes people hear advice from friends or relatives. About 70% cases of self-medication with antibiotics is not justified.
A special place is occupied by viral infections. Antibiotics have absolutely no effect on viruses. Meanwhile, the majority of seasonal diseases are not related to bacteria.
What diseases have a viral origin? These are influenza and ARVI (acute respiratory viral infection). Moreover, the majority of pharyngitis, rhinitis, tracheitis, and bronchitis are also caused by different viruses. That is why often we do not see the effect after taking antibiotics for these diseases.
So, Amoxicillin from Canadian Pharmacy, like any other antibacterial drug, is not used for viral infections. It is very difficult to distinguish a disease caused by bacteria and viruses if you have nothing to do with medicine. Even doctors sometimes do not differentiate these pathogens. As a result, a number of unjustified antibiotics use is growing, and at the same time, new strains of drug-resistant bacteria appear.
Despite a respectable age of Amoxicillin, reviews on this drug are usually positive. Doctors are unanimous in one thing: when used correctly, the drug really works. However, Amoxicillin must be prescribed by doctors since certain bacteria strains are resistant to this substance. And self-treatment in such a case is unacceptable.
Posted by Dr. Himanshu Singh