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Antibiotics

Antibiotics Introduction

Antibiotics are among the most frequently prescribed medications in modern medicine. Antibiotics cure disease by killing or injuring bacteria. The first antibiotic was penicillin, discovered accidentally from a mold culture. Today, over 100 different antibiotics are available to cure minor, and life-threatening infections.

Although antibiotics are useful in a wide variety of infections, it is important to realize that antibiotics only treat bacterial infections. Antibiotics are useless against viral infections (for example, the common cold) and fungal infections (such as ringworm). Your doctor can best determine if an antibiotic is right for your condition.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 11/11/2014
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Patient Comments & Reviews

The eMedicineHealth doctors ask about Antibiotics:

Antibiotics - Drug Interactions

Did you experience any negative drug interactions when taking antibiotics?




Read What Your Physician is Reading on Medscape

Antibiotics: A Review of ED Use »

Note: A one-page reference table with key therapy recommendations taken from this article can be downloaded in Adobe Acrobat format by clicking the Antibiotics Guidelines Summary.

Read More on Medscape Reference »


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