Do I need antibiotics?

Late last night, I tripped over the dog while in an exhausted haze. To cut a long story short, he squealed and I squealed and then he bit me on the foot. The puncture wounds are quite deep and bled a lot. I phoned the GP who advised that I need antibiotics and a tetanus booster as it's been 13 years since my last one. When I saw the practice nurse, she gave me the injection but advised to monitor for infection. I feel a bit uncomfortable about this because the GP felt I did need them as does <ahem> Dr Google. I'm on humira, mtx and leflunomide, so a hefty whack of immunosuppressant medication. Shall I go back and ask to be seen again tomorrow or is that a waste of time? Thanks in advance.

19 Replies

  • Definitely go back and get antibiotics. ..... it's not up to the nurse, you need to be proactive when you're immunosuppressed. The gp obviously realised that, a dog's teeth are teeming with bacteria not worth the risk.

    Hope it's not too painful! M xx

  • About the only thing filthier than a dog bite is a human one. :) I'd ask to see a doctor tomorrow to see about an anti-b.

  • Thank you both for the replies. :)

    Someone pointed me in the direction of the NICE guidelines and pointed out that I should have been prescribed them. I feel silly because the 'bite' is very minor looking but it broke the skin in 5 places and bled a lot. It's more bruised and swollen than wound-ish. Anyway, I shall pop to the GP tomorrow morning. I may as well move in!

  • I would talk to the doctor again. You need to be careful about taking antibiotics "just in case" as that is what is causing all the antibiotic resistance that is so common now. Getting the doctor to actually look at the injury (and maybe even taking a swab) is probably a better judgement on whether you need antibiotics than either a nurse or Dr Google.

  • Certainly I'd go see GP again, and since it's been over 24 hours he/she should be able to assess the risk more accurately. If there's no sign of any infection then bombarding your body with antibiotics may well not be the best idea, as they can knock out good bugs as well as bad ones, but best to get proper medical advice based on the wound being looked at.

  • I won't insist on antibiotics if the GP doesn't think so. I was just surprised that the duty GP on the phone told me I would need them and then the nurse said I didn't. I'm also surprised that I got a tetanus jab because the risk is even lower than the infection risk!

    Good point about killing the good bacteria. I've not once managed a course of antibiotics without suffering from thrush for an entire week afterwards, so I don't want to be too hasty,

    Oh the joys of RA and it's meds, eh?!

  • Hi - I used to get thrush every time I took antibiotics - in fact I used to ask for the thrush treatment at the same time. However, I was advised to drink a probiotic drink every day whilst on antibiotics (eg Yakult or similar) and since doing this I haven't had thrush at all. Worth a try!

  • P.S. You are all very kind. When I told my family, their biggest concern was the dog and whether he was totally traumatised by a clumsy oaf falling on top of him, as he's only little!!

  • ..... And the joys of being a dog owner!! I say this as our little Cypriot rescue dog has decided that the contents of our little wildlife pond look far better scattered around the garden.

    I hope the foot will heal quickly (& that your dog is OK too). xx

  • Well, I can see his logic in the same way that I understand why Oscar feels that all shoes look better in the garden rather than cluttering up the cupboard. ;)

    He is fine. He was horribly shocked initially but he's fully recovered. The ham and cheese definitely helped matters!

  • Yes, I too had concerns for the dog! x

  • Yes you do need antibiotics urgently. Augmentin too no other type. (Unless you have an allergy) I am a nurse, but actually I know this because I got bitten by a dog couple years ago, felt ok at time but next day was nauseous and had a temperature. I went to a&e (because i was at work in hospital) got a tetanus and I was given antibiotic tablets but within hours I was really Ill and spent a week in hospital on iv antibiotics. Go back today and show her what you read, it may not be infected but if it is you need to act very fast, and in this case they will and do give abx just in case. Especially on your meds, I wasn't on any meds then and was really healthy and fit.

  • A week ago I was scratched by my kitten, just one deep claw mark, which overnight swelled and was very painful, I also went to the gp and had the tetanus injection but also 3 days of double strength antibiotics, I am on methotrexate only but they felt it necessary for me to take the antibiotics, so I would maybe have another word with your gp

  • I have this thing always ask what the next step is as gPs etc don't always say! Go back play it safe if you are unsure.

    When Im on antibiotics my meds dont work as well but if the antibiotic works its worth it.

  • I am an A&E nurse, you should be given Augmentin.........your practice nurse should know this !

  • I spoke to the nicest GP receptionist who agreed that I need to be seen and I have an appt in a few hours. I feel relieved that I'm being checked over, especially as the weekend looms as it's not easy to be seen out of hours.

    Thank you for the encouragement.

  • I hope you get something today. A nurse isn't the one to go against the doctor! I know they say antibiotics are being used too much, but there are times when they are essential. My GP gives me some on standby in case of problems at weekends.

  • I've got an infection in the wound. I've also got a cough and a high fever. I'm on antibiotics and feeling horrid. :(

    I was really ill while waiting for the duty GP yesterday, he was running an hour late. I had fast pulse, low blood pressure and left with a promise to call out of hours on Sunday morning if I'm no better. Still feeling awful but hoping I might pick up.

  • So sorry to hear that. ....hope you feel better soon. Really annoying when it should have been avoided. Look after yourself. M xx

You may also like...