Sexual health experts encourage patients to complete antibiotic courses as prescribed

27th July 2017

The British Association for Sexual Health and HIV (BASHH) has commented on findings published today in the British Medical Journal concerning the appropriate use of antibiotics.

Conclusions drawn from the study, which was led by Martin Llewelyn, Professor of Infectious Diseases at Brighton and Sussex Medical School and is available online here, have queried the long-held view that patients should always complete a prescribed course of antibiotics. Based on their findings, the study authors suggest that new advice is needed, and that this should be informed by further research.

Commenting on the findings, Dr Mark Lawton, Chair of BASHH’s Media Group said:

Whilst BASHH acknowledges the importance of promoting responsible antimicrobial stewardship, in the absence of further research into the relationship between antimicrobial resistance and antibiotic course-length, we encourage patients to stick to the advice that they should finish their prescribed course of antibiotics when treating a sexually transmitted infection. Completing the prescribed course of antibiotics as recommended by their sexual health doctor likely remains the most effective method of clearing infection


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