What you need to know if you or your kids are allergic to penicillin
Board-certified otolaryngologist Dr. Jordan Pritikin says, "Most sinus infections are caused by strep bacteria species. A number of antibiotics that are used to treat sinus infections are in the penicillin family. Yet around one in ten people report a history of a penicillin allergy. For such people, antibiotics cannot be used." Cephalosporin antibiotics (such as Ceftin or Suprax) are structurally similar to penicillin and should be avoided by people with a penicillin allergy.
Fortunately, there are other medications which can be used to treat a sinus infection. Sulfa-based antibiotics (such as Bactrim) can be used in penicillin-allergic patients, but these antibiotics can also trigger an allergic reaction. Furthermore, Sulfa antibiotics can cause a rash with sun exposure, upset stomach, nausea and dizziness. "All antibiotics have the potential to cause side effects," says Dr. Pritikin. "So, we take steps to minimize these side effects. Taking antibiotics with food, using a probiotic to maintain the normal bacteria of the digestive tract and discarding old and expired ‘left-over' antibiotics are all recommended."
About Dr. Jordan Pritikin:
Dr. Jordan Pritikin is a board-certified otolaryngologist at Chicago Nasal & Sinus Center, a private medical practice devoted to the diagnosis and treatment of nasal and sinus disorders. Dr. Pritikin is a Fellow of the American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery and attended Rush Medical College in Chicago, where he was selected to the Alpha Omega Alpha Honors Medical Society. Over the years, Dr. Pritikin has cultivated an interest in Rhinology, focusing his practice on diseases of the nose and sinuses, and has participated in clinical research exploring innovative therapies for chronic sinusitis. He has lectured at local and national meetings, developed informational and training videos demonstrating surgical techniques for the nose and sinuses, and has helped develop and refine instruments designed for sinus surgery. Dr. Pritikin and the Chicago Nasal & Sinus Center offer patients an unparalleled level of service, utilizing state-of-the art technology and innovative treatments while maintaining a thoughtful and caring approach. For more information visit http://www.
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