Antibiotics vs Antiviral Drugs
Antiviral and antibiotics – are there any differences between them? If so, when are some drugs shown, and when are others, is it possible to combine them? All these questions are important for every person, because unknowingly you can harm yourself by trying to cure certain diseases.
The difference between antibiotics and antivirals
The literal translation of the word “antibiotics” is an obstacle to life. All right. However, in traditional medicine, this is understood as an obstacle to the life of pathogenic bacteria. It is against them that these drugs show their activity. But bacteria also live in the human body, which are necessary for its normal functioning. They, like pathogenic ones, fall under the action of antibiotics (antiviral agents do not affect all of the above microorganisms).
The mechanism of action of antibiotics may be different. Some of them suppress the reproduction of bacteria without causing their death (bacteriostatic drugs: Erythromycin, Spiramycin, etc.), while others kill bacteria and promote their excretion from the body (bactericidal: Augmentin, Flemoxin, etc.). The activity of antibiotics can manifest itself both in relation to a narrow spectrum of bacterial agents, and a wide one that is used when choosing a particular drug for the treatment of specific diseases.
Antiviral drugs, unlike antibiotics, are effective only against viral particles (they do not affect bacteria). In most cases, these are preparations of exogenous (coming from outside) interferon, which causes the direct death of viruses and inhibit their reproduction. A smaller part of antiviral drugs are stimulators of the formation of interferon compounds.
Situations where antiviral and antibiotics are needed
The use of antibiotics is indicated in the development of bacterial infections in the body. Most often these are diseases such as:
- Pneumonia is an inflammation of the lung tissue (Ampicillin, Ceftriaxone, Sumamed and others).
- Pyelonephritis is inflammation of the kidneys (Amoxiclav, Augmentin, etc.).
- Cystitis is an inflammatory process of the bladder (Ampicillin, Monural, 5-NOK, etc.).
- Peptic ulcer is a consequence of infection of the stomach or duodenum with Helicobacter bateria (Ampicillin, Metronidazole, Azithromycin).
- Colitis and/or enteritis – inflammation of the large (small) intestine (Furazolidone, Levomycetin), etc.
Antibiotics are also used for preventive purposes in order to avoid the activation of conditionally pathogenic microorganisms that live on the skin and mucous membranes normally, but under certain conditions become pathogenic. Usually, antibiotic prophylaxis is prescribed in connection with an upcoming or already performed surgical intervention
Antiviral agents are always prescribed for an already developed infection of viral origin. They are never used for the purpose of prevention. Most often, these drugs are indicated for infections such as:
- ARVI (Remantadine, Arbidol, Adalin, etc.) Cytomegalovirus (Levamizole) Herpes simplex virus (Acyclovir, Valacyclovir, Panavir) Papillomavirus (Lavomax).
- HIV infection and others (Zidovudine, Salzitabine, Lamivudine).
Many people are interested in the question of whether it is possible to take antiviral drugs and antibiotics at the same time. It is possible, but when there are strict indications for it. We are talking about primary infection with viruses that further weaken the immune system, which leads to the activation of bacterial flora. This situation is called superinfection. It can occur in acute respiratory viral infections, against which secondary bacterial pneumonia develops. A similar situation is observed with HIV infection, which stimulates the development of bacterial diseases.
Use in childhood
Antiviral drugs and antibiotics for children are indispensable in the development of an infectious and inflammatory process, which is associated with the immaturity of their immune system.
However, only a doctor can choose the right and harmless drug. The use of antibiotics in childhood is most often indicated for infections of the respiratory system and ENT organs, less often they have to be used for intestinal infections. Antiviral agents are prescribed to children when:
Flu (Arbidol, Tamiflu).
Herpes (Acyclovir, Valtrex).
Viral conjunctivitis (eye drops Poludan, Actipol), etc.
Antibiotics and antiviral drugs cannot replace each other, as they affect different pathogens of infection. Before prescribing the drug, it is necessary to consult a doctor, since by making a diagnosis yourself, you risk not relieving the symptoms, but only aggravating them.
The material is informational in nature. Medicinal products are indicated as an example of their possible use and/or application, which is not a recommendation for their use. Before using medications, be sure to consult with a specialist.