Is it safe to take antibiotics for an extended period of time?

Published: October 7, 2013
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Hi there Dr Teitelbaum. I was very interested to read your article on CFS and antibiotic treatment. I've had quite bad CFS for over 20 years but have noticed that when I take a course of antibiotics for whatever infection I have picked up, I always feel relief from the CFS. Last year I was prescribed Cephalexin two separate times, and each time I felt 'normal' - an extremely unusual feeling for someone with CFS! Do you think it would be safe to take Cephalexin for a time? If so, how long for and at what dosage? I just can't find a doctor who believes in CFS, let alone antibiotic treatment for it. I live in Brisbane, Australia. Look forward to your reply.

Answer

In my patients given your history, I give the antibiotic at the dose that helped (eg- Cephalexin 500 mg 4 x day) for 6 months to see if there is sustained improvement and also give probiotics and other antifungals to protect against Candida overgrowth.

L&B,
Dr T

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