Antibiotics Consumption may Double the Danger of a Child Contracting Juvenile Arthritis
Juvenile arthritis is a form of auto-immune disease that involves chronic inflammation of the joints and eyes that can lead to pain, vision loss and disability. A new study has revealed that taking antibiotics may double the risk of a child contracting juvenile arthritis. The findings are published in Pediatrics.
Lead study author Daniel Horton from Rutgers University in New Jersey said, "Our research suggests another possible reason to avoid antibiotic overuse for infections that would otherwise get better on their own."
For the study, the research team used The Health Improvement Network (THIN), a database with information on over 11 million people across Britain. Of the roughly 450,000 children studied, about 152 were diagnosed with juvenile arthritis. After adjusting for other auto-immune conditions and previous infection, the scientists determined that children who received prescriptions for antibiotics had an increased risk for developing juvenile arthritis. They found that the risk was strongest within one year of receiving antibiotics.
Study senior author Brian Strom from Rutgers University said, "This is an extremely important clue about the etiology of this serious and potentially crippling disease. If confirmed, it also provides a means for preventing it."