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Hearing loss in infants and antibiotics

Ohio parents may be interested in hearing about a recent study showing that some antibiotics that are routinely used to treat infants with bacterial infections are linked to causing loss of their hearing. The class of antibiotics linked to the high risk of suffering permanent hearing loss is the aminoglycosides antibiotic class.

Researchers in the study administered aminoglycosides antibiotics to mice and then looked at the number that developed subsequent hearing losses. When mice were given a small amount of the antibiotics, they developed a small amount of hearing loss. However, when they also had a bacterial infection such as those for which the medications are used, they had a much higher degree of hearing loss.

Aminoglycosides antibiotics have been commonly used by doctors to treat meningitis, respiratory infections in children who have cystic fibrosis and bacteremia. The researchers said doctors should select different antibiotic classes to treat these infections in infants. They also called for more research into developing new aminoglycosides that do not have the same affect on hearing loss. Hearing loss as an infant may make it much more difficult to learn to communicate and may permanently impact the child's ability to later find a job.

When a medication error, such as administering the wrong type of medication to a child, causes a permanent disabling condition, the injured child's parents may want to consider filing a medical malpractice lawsuit against the responsible parties seeking damages designed to compensate both them and their child for the losses they sustained as a result. Those who are in this position may want to obtain the assistance of a medical malpractice attorney.

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