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Quiz: How Much Do You Know About Antibiotics?

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Antibiotics treat infections from:

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Antibiotics treat infections from:

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

Antibiotics, which have been around for 70 years, have no effect on viruses like those that cause a cold and or the flu -- and taking them for viruses may do more harm than good. Doing so can make the bacteria change, which makes antibiotics less likely to work. That’s called resistance.

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Antibacterial cleansers may make germs stronger against antibiotics.

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Antibacterial cleansers may make germs stronger against antibiotics.

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Some studies suggest triclosan, which is in many antibacterial soaps and cleansers, may lead to changes in bacteria that make antibiotics less effective in fighting them. The FDA wants companies that make these soaps to show more proof that they work. The agency says there is no evidence that these soaps are better at preventing illness than plain soap and water.

Drugs you take for acne can hurt antibiotics’ effects.

Drugs you take for acne can hurt antibiotics’ effects.

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  • Correct Answer:

Doctors often prescribe antibiotics to treat acne. But taking any antibiotic can lead to resistance. Because of this, work closely with your doctor to treat your acne.

You always need antibiotics for:

You always need antibiotics for:

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  • Correct Answer:

Strep throat is caused by bacteria. You can be sure you have it only after a lab test.

 

A sinus infection, also called sinusitis, is almost always caused by a virus or by irritation from the air. The infection gets better on its own without antibiotics. Although it’s rare, some sinus infections are caused by bacteria. If your symptoms last for more than 10 days after you see a doctor, schedule a follow-up.

 

Ear infections can also be caused by a virus or bacteria. They may get better without antibiotics. Doctors consider several things when deciding whether to use them, including the person's age and how sick the person is. They may decide to wait a couple of days to see if symptoms go away.

It’s OK to stop taking antibiotics as soon as you feel better.

It’s OK to stop taking antibiotics as soon as you feel better.

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Take antibiotics exactly as prescribed, do not skip doses, and finish them all. If you stop too soon, some bacteria may survive and make you sick again.

How many people each year get infections that antibiotics don’t help?

How many people each year get infections that antibiotics don’t help?

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These infections, like tuberculosis, skin infections, and sexually transmitted ones, lead to at least 23,000 deaths a year. People get most of them at home, school, or work. But most people who die from them are in health care settings like hospitals or nursing homes. Patients pick up the bacteria from surfaces or from the hands of doctors or nurses.

Animals can play a role in antibiotics not working in humans.

Animals can play a role in antibiotics not working in humans.

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  • Correct Answer:

Livestock that get antibiotics can develop resistant bacteria in their bodies, which are then in the meat we eat. When you don’t cook or handle the meat right, the bacteria can spread to humans. Fertilizer and water used on crops we eat can also spread bacteria. The FDA says it is phasing out the use of antibiotics, except those prescribed by a veterinarian, in animals raised for food.

Fewer new antibiotics have been created in the past 30 years.

Fewer new antibiotics have been created in the past 30 years.

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  • Correct Answer:

There have been some new drugs, but there hasn’t been a major new class of antibiotics discovered since the 1980s. But the threat of resistance has been around for decades – in his Nobel Prize speech in 1945, Alexander Fleming, who discovered penicillin, warned that bacteria could become resistant to these drugs.

 

Several efforts are now under way to create more antibiotics.

How much does antibiotic resistance cost yearly?

How much does antibiotic resistance cost yearly?

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  • Correct Answer:

Antibiotic resistance is taking an economic toll on the entire health care system, the CDC says. Resistant infections make people sicker. They stay in the hospital longer and need more expensive treatment.

Which germ worries health officials the most?

Which germ worries health officials the most?

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C. diff causes life-threatening diarrhea. Each year, it’s responsible for 250,000 hospitalizations and 14,000 deaths. The bacteria are naturally resistant to many drugs and spread quickly. A stronger strain emerged in the year 2000, and deaths related to the bacteria increased 400% between 2000 and 2007, partly because of it.

 

Carbapenem-resistant enterobacteriaceae (CRE) bacteria is also considered an urgent threat. It causes infections that are resistant to nearly all antibiotics. Those include carbapenems, commonly considered a last resort. A third urgent threat is drug-resistant Neisseria gonorrhoeae , which causes gonorrhea.

 

MRSA and drug-resistant tuberculosis are both considered to have a threat level of “serious.”

It’s OK to take antibiotics prescribed to someone else.

It’s OK to take antibiotics prescribed to someone else.

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

Someone else’s antibiotic may not be the right one for your illness. Taking the wrong medicine may make it take longer for you to get better -- and could even make you get worse.

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Your Score:     You correctly answered   out of   questions.
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