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Updated 11:29 AM EDT, Tue, Jun 16, 2020

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Antibiotics Use May Increase Risk Of Juvenile Arthritis In Children

Antibiotics Use May Increase The Risk Of Developing Juvenile Arthritis

(Photo : Photo by John Moore/Getty Images) Children taking antibiotics are at two folds increased risk of developing juvenile arthritis than children who do not take in antibiotics.

Children taking antibiotics are at two folds increased risk of developing juvenile arthritis than children who do not take in antibiotics, say the researchers at Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences Child Health Institute of New Jersey.

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The researchers noted that the risk of juvenile arthritis in children increases proportionately with every course of antibiotics taken. Many recent researches had shown that about 50 percent of children prescribed with antibiotics don't need them and in turn recover by themselves, according to Pioneer News.

Dr. Daniel Horton, the lead author of the study and a research fellow with the Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences, said, "This risk was greatest within a year of receiving antibiotics and increased with the number of antibiotic courses children were prescribed."

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had reported an increase in the number of juvenile arthritis cases in the country among children aged 16 and below. Researchers are aware of the fact that genetics is the root cause for only 25 percent of the cases shifted their focus on other environmental factors involved in causing the disease, reported US News.

The investigators studied 152 juvenile arthritis cases reported among 450,000 children aged between 1 and 15, from 1994 to 2013, in the United Kingdom. After conducting a detailed study on 1,520 cases with antibiotic prescription histories, the researchers found that there is a positive association between juvenile arthritis and antibiotics intake.

Horton also noted that no similar association was observed as far as antifungal and antiviral drugs are concerned. Horton clarified that people need not be afraid of the findings as majority of the children under antibiotic medication are safe from being affected by Juvenile arthritis because children who are prone to developing the disease actually comprise a minimal percentage.

Dr. Matthew Kronman, an assistant professor of pediatric infectious diseases at Seattle Children's Hospital and the University of Washington, said, "It's also the case that the overall risk for [juvenile arthritis] is very low." Kronman also added, "Even if that risk approximately doubles among children treated with antibiotics; you're still talking about just 10 cases out of every 100,000 children." 

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