Long-term antibiotics

Are long term anti-biotics ever used in the treatment of asthma, and if so when are they indicated?

I'm on quite a lot for my asthma, including long-term Pred, which as soon as they stop, I plummet. My GP is very keen (as am I) that we find a non-steroid treatment route if possible because of all the issues it's caused me.

One thing that worked for me in the past (given accidentally by a locum who really wasn't sure what to do...) was a strong course of anti-biotics, even though there weren't any clear signs of infection. My nurse said something about it sometimes working, something to do with irritation in the small airways - I didn't really understand.

My GP, in her anti-Pred attempt decided it couldn't do any harm to try anti-biotics again as I was plummeting, and the hospital (wasn't in for respiratory issues - think they made this bit up!) extended the course. And it's worked, peak flows up, and less symptomatic. Trouble is, GPs not sure whether to continue, and haven't as yet been able to get any guidance from my hosp. asthma nurse or consultant, so I'm just continuing to pop the pills, but not sure if that's a good idea or not?

Can anti-biotics be used long-term in the treatment of asthma?

How do they work if there isn't an obvious infection?

8 Replies

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  • I take long term antibiotics for my asthma & I think they are helping in the bigger picture so to speak! Am still on pred though but trying to reduce...

    My consultant decided to try them after looking at the results of my bronchoscopy & I don't have particularly allergic type asthma. I was told they are used for their anti-inflammatory properties in slightly lower, regular doses rather than the 'normal' anti-biotic dose.

  • Hi

    I used to take long term antibiotics not for my asthma but for something else they where incredibly strong and I did notice a difference in general health over the winter and feel they probably helped my asthma as well ! the thing I was takin the antibiotics for has improved a lot and the antibiotics then had to be downgraded to other which really didn't agree with me :( but what I'm trying to say is although they werent specifically for my asthma they had an affect I hope you get some kind of agreement and something sorted

    Xx

  • I've had a trial of long term antibiotics for my asthma. I had a CT scan which showed lots of inflammation and was put on Azithromycin for it's anti-inflammatory properties. I very rarely get chest infections so it wasn't put on it for infection reasons. I didn't find it helpful so it was stopped, but I've heard that Azithromycin can really help some people :)

  • it depends really.. im on long-term antibiotics becasue i have bronchiectasis and chronicly infected with pseudo :/ i have inhaled and tablets. But i was on them before i became infected chronicly and it did help lots!! i was on augmentin Prophylactic and it helped alot :) i hope they let to try it! anything is worth a try! hope it works for you!

  • I was put on azithromycin for it's anti inflammatory properties.. Should some improvement initially but short lived .... Dr won't stop them as concerned things may get worse if they do....... Least it cured the constipation and increased the comsumption of andrex !!!!

  • as said previously, azithromycin is the long-term antibiotic used in asthmastics cos of theanti-inflammatories. if u then get an infection and need other antibotics, you stop taking the azithro for however long the course is, then continu back on it. prof grin would need to approve it - or better still the BROMPTON!!

    i too seem to plummet when trying to reduce pred, just wanna come off them once and for all but doesnt seem to be happening, thats why i have asked already bout the azithromycin, thats wot been told!

    x x x

  • hiya,

    i have used long term anti b, Azithromycin in the past and following several infections am about to go back on it, the dose is 500mg 3 times a week.

    they tell me it works in several ways, including having an anti inflamatory action. i felt ok on it and unlike loads of anti bs doesnt make me feel ill!!, i do suggest taking probiotics with them.

    you need to get your liver function tested regularly too,

    if suggested i would give it a go, i was reluctant but glad i did, i only came off it as i was so well!!!

    good luck and hope this helps,

    g xx

  • hiya,

    i have used long term anti b, Azithromycin in the past and following several infections am about to go back on it, the dose is 500mg 3 times a week.

    they tell me it works in several ways, including having an anti inflamatory action. i felt ok on it and unlike loads of anti bs doesnt make me feel ill!!, i do suggest taking probiotics with them.

    you need to get your liver function tested regularly too,

    if suggested i would give it a go, i was reluctant but glad i did, i only came off it as i was so well!!!

    good luck and hope this helps,

    g xx

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