Are antibiotics associated with improved outcomes in patients with acute bronchitis?
Prescribing antibiotics for acute bronchitis was associated with reduced overall and nighttime cough and with an approximately half-day reduction in duration of cough, in days feeling ill, and in days with impaired activities. However, at follow-up, there were no significant differences in patients receiving antibiotics compared with those receiving placebo in overall clinical improvements or limitations in work or other activities. There was a significant increase in adverse effects in the antibiotic group, particularly gastrointestinal symptoms.
Smith SM, Smucny J, Fahey T. Antibiotics for Acute Bronchitis. JAMA. 2014;312(24):2678–2679. doi:10.1001/jama.2014.12839
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