Possible Linkage Between Antibiotics and JIA
Newly diagnosed juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) has been found to be potentially linked to previous antibiotic usage.
About the Antibiotics/JIA Linkage
Using electronic medical records that portray the population in the UK, researches identifies 152 children ages 1-15 that had been newly diagnosed with JIA between the years of 1994 and 2013. These children were then compared to 10 sex and age matched control subjects who did not have immunodeficiency, inflammatory bowel disease, or system rheumatic diseases.
The researchers looked at the antibiotic courses within each group. The results showed one or more of the courses of antibiotic therapy seemed to be associated with an increased risk of JIA.
Break Down of the Study Results
Antibiotic courses within a year of diagnoses of JIA showed the greatest chance of linkage, but it did not matter the kind of antibiotic. To find the risk among patients, the researchers compared patients with upper respiratory tract infections who were treated and untreated, the study showed that ones who were treated with antibiotics seemed to be put at a higher risk for JIA.
Limitations of the study were acknowledged, such as different subcategories of JIA as well as the relatively young age of the patients being studied. Researched expressed the importance of the study because the patients are so young and that often times, antibiotics are prescribed for upper respiratory infections that do not need antibiotics; therefore, putting the children at a higher, unnecessary risk.
The study does not suggest a causal relationship between antibiotics and JIA, but it does open doors for further necessary research.