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Antimicrobial chemotherapy 

Antimicrobial chemotherapy

Chapter:
Antimicrobial chemotherapy
Author(s):

R.G. Finch

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199204854.003.070205_update_001

Update:

Addition of new treatments for HCV and HIV; addition of echinocandins; update on antimalarials; novel antituberculosis agents; emergence of drug-resistant organisms, e.g. XDR TB, VISA, and VRSA.

Updated on 31 May 2012. The previous version of this content can be found here.
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date: 27 June 2017

The practice of medicine changed dramatically with the availability of effective antimicrobial agents. Fatal diseases such as bacterial meningitis and endocarditis became treatable; much minor community infectious morbidity became readily controlled; many surgical procedures became much safer, and developments in solid organ and bone marrow transplantation became possible. However, the very success of antimicrobial chemotherapy has led to overuse, misuse and inappropriate pressures from the public to prescribe. In many countries, antibiotics are freely available to the public for purchase ‘over the counter’, with few controls or guidance to ensure their safe and effective use. The emergence and spread of antimicrobial resistance worldwide and the decline in development and licensing of new antimicrobials threaten the future successful treatment of bacterial infections....

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