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Antibiotics Linked to Arthritis in Kids

Recent evidence has linked childhood antibiotic use and microbiome disturbance to autoimmune conditions. This study tested the hypothesis that antibiotic exposure was associated with newly diagnosed juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA).

For this study, the researchers studied medical records database from the United Kingdom. Children with newly diagnosed JIA were compared with age- and sex-matched control subjects. What the results revealed was that any antibiotic exposure was associated with an over 2X increased rate of developing JIA. This relationship was also dose dependent (meaning the higher the dose, the greater the risk). In addition, antibiotic-treated upper respiratory tract infections were more strongly associated with JIA than untreated upper respiratory tract infections.

The researcher concluded, "Antibiotic exposure may play a role in JIA pathogenesis, perhaps mediated through alterations in the microbiome."

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Source: Antibiotic Exposure and Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis: A Case–Control Study

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