(NaturalHealth365) While antibiotics have saved lives and restored health in some cases, they can have hazards and side effects just like any drug. Such is the case with fluoroquinolones, a popular antibiotic best known under the brand names Cipro, Levaquin and Avelox. In fact, in the year 2010, Levaquin was the top-selling antibiotic in the United States.
However, by the following year, the company had over 2,000 lawsuits leveled against it from patients who were reporting severe health problems and reactions after taking it.
Serious risk factors and death caused by antibiotics
In February of 2015, reports surfaced of a man dying after taking Levaquin in a once-per-day dose of 750mg. After two pills, it was clear to the man’s wife that he was having an adverse reaction; three days later, the athletic, otherwise-healthy 41-year-old Georgia man — the father of small children — was dead.
A Manhattan man developed debilitating pain and weakness after just one dose of fluoroquinolones. When he reported the adverse reaction, he was told to just “take the next dose.” The next pill, according to the user, “eviscerated” him, leading to vision issues and extreme pain in all of his joints.
A study published in The Journal of the American Medical Association showed that risk of retinal detachment and blindness was five times higher among people who took fluoroquinolones; another study documented double the risk of kidney problems among fluoroquinolones users. Be sure to ask your doctor about possible side effects BEFORE taking any medication. If you are not getting the information you need – find a better physician.
Understand the side effects of antibiotics
The symptoms and side effects of antibiotics reported by users of fluoroquinolones have included:
- Extreme fatigue
- Vision issues
- Muscle spasms
- Nausea and diarrhea
- Dry eyes, skin and mouth
- Ringing in the ears
- Trouble urinating
- Uncontrollable shaking
- Tingling or burning pain in eyes, feet, hands or other body parts
- Heart palpitations
In some cases, fluoroquinolones can cause serious brain and central nervous system issues like depression, “brain fog,” hallucinations and even psychotic reactions. Some users have reported that their symptoms continued for months after the last pill was taken.
While some experts say that fluoroquinolones are simply prescribed “too soon,” as they are not recommended as a first line of treatment for issues such as pneumonia, the reality and prospect of these side effects is sobering and daunting, no matter what the issue.
In fact, fluoroquinolones already carry what’s called a “black box” warning from the FDA; however, patients are rarely informed about such warnings when prescribed antibiotics. Unfortunately, most patients are never even offered an alternative to antibiotics – which can provide relief of symptoms and prove to be much safer.
A disturbing lack of research and long-term studies
There is also a disturbing lack of research into how these antibiotics affect people long-term. There has been some speculation that fibromyalgia can arise later in life in persons who have taken a fluoroquinolone.
Until better warnings and transparency is present in the medical field, we will all have to be vigilant and responsible for our own wellbeing. Never accept a prescription blindly or passively; do your homework, or have a loved one do it for you. Be proactive, and protect yourself from side effects of antibiotics and other drugs.