Published: Sun, May 13, 2018
Medical | By Marta Holmes

Antibiotics May Raise the Risk for Kidney Stones

Antibiotics May Raise the Risk for Kidney Stones

The research showed the earlier they're used, the higher the risk for stones. After adjustments for age, sex, race, urinary tract infection, other medications and medical conditions, patients who received sulfa drugs were more than twice as likely as those not exposed to antibiotics to have kidney stones, the researchers said. In such cases, a urologist may need to remove the kidney stones or break them into smaller pieces. And Dr. Tasian says the biggest increase in kidney stones has been among adolescent girls.

It's estimated that about 30 percent of antibiotic prescriptions are inappropriate.

Children and adults treated with oral antibiotics may have a higher risk of developing kidney stones, according to a new study.

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Tasian and his colleagues are hoping to expand this research into broader, population-based studies to better understand how variations in microbiome composition may influence the development of kidney stones.

Tasian says, there is no certified way to reduce the risk of conditions related to antibiotics intake today but there will be a solution very soon.

"Whenever I get a pain in the stomach, I think, 'Oh god kidney stones again, '" she says. The adjusted odds ratio (95% confidence interval) was 2.33 (2.19 to 2.48) for sulfas, 1.88 (1.75 to 2.01) for cephalosporins, 1.67 (1.54 to 1.81) for fluoroquinolones, 1.70 (1.55 to 1.88) for nitrofurantoin/methenamine, and 1.27 (1.18 to 1.36) for broad-spectrum penicillins.

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Now, that the link has been established between antibiotics and stones.

Drawing on health records from the United Kingdom, the team analysed prior antibiotic exposure for almost 26,000 patients with kidney stones and compared them with almost 260,000 control subjects.

Exposure to any one of five different antibiotic classes 3-12 months before the index date was associated with nephrolithiasis. For the broad-spectrum penicillins, the risks were increased by 27%.

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It is still unknown why kidney stones are on a hike these days but according to the study, consuming antibiotics certainly play a major role when it comes to prescribing them to children more than that of adults. The risk of nephrolithiasis decreased over time, but it remained elevated at 3-5 years after the antibiotic prescription.

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