|A popular class of oral antibiotics doubles the risk of experiencing permanent nerve damage, according to new research published in the journal Neurology.|
Fluoroquinolones are one of the most-prescribed classes of antibiotics in B.C., often used in cases of respiratory and urinary tract infection, but they have been implicated in a variety of serious side effects.
“An Ontario group found a link with liver disease. We found a link with retinal detachment and kidney disease, and now peripheral neuropathy. These are pretty serious, nasty conditions compared with a more typical antibiotic, which might give you a couple of days of diarrhea,” said lead author Mahyar Etminan, a drug safety researcher at the University of B.C.
The most popular of these drugs, ciprofloxacin, mocifloxacin and levofloxacin, are sold under the trade names Cipro, Avelox and Levaquin.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration last year ordered a warning be added to the labelling on all fluoroquinolone drugs after receiving anecdotal reports of peripheral neuropathy, which causes muscle weakness, numbness and pain.
Etminan’s group sought to quantify the risk.
“In the past couple of years, there were lots of cases reported to the FDA of peripheral neuropathy, which is a condition in which the...