Antibiotics and lenght of treatment
I have a mild case of cystic fibrosis, so I rarely take oral antibiotics. Recently, a friend of mine was shocked to learn that I stop the treatment as soon as I feel better. I have often stopped taking the antibiotics after six or seven days. Is it true that this makes it more likely for me to develop a resistance to antibiotics?
The first thing to be concerned about when cutting an antibiotic treatment short is that you may not completely cure the infection or you might become re-infected shortly after an apparent cure.
The bacterium causing the infection may also become resistant to the antibiotics. If the treatment is too short, the number of surviving bacteria that have been exposed to the antibiotic can be quite high. There is thus an increased risk that one of these bacteria will develop a genetic mutation enabling it to resist the antibiotic.