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Steriods, antibiotics repeated use in a 2 year old

(17 Posts)
Perkin Sun 25-Jan-04 18:08:39

Bit of a dilemma. A family member, cousin's wife, has a daughter just turned 2. cousin's dd has a tendency to get coughs and colds and cw takes her to the dr's every time, about once every 10 days or so. Each time antibiotics and'or steriods seem to be prescribed and, if they are not, cw just goes back to another gp/emergency gp until they are.

I'm not very knowlegeable on this but am worried that cdd is taking a lot of drugs (I would think 7 or 8 courses of antibiotics and 5 of steriods this autumn/winter so far) for such a young child. They also give her an inhaler morning and night. She is chesty and *does* get a cough but not much more that the average 2 year old, IMO.

Cousin & cw are lovely people but not the sort to look into this independently or do their own research and tend to feel a bit 'done' if they come away from gps without a prescription.

Does any one know if this will be harmful to her and, if so, what effects it might have?


zebra Sun 25-Jan-04 18:45:06

It would worry me too, Perkin. But I'm not knowledgeable. Except... since when are steroids used to treat a cold?? Or antiobiotics, for that matter. Are you sure the child doesn't have some more serious underlying condition the doctors are treating? I'm surprised that they would be so willing to keep handing out antibiotics. Maybe they are just giving your CW sugar pills?! It's been known to happen.

Plus, not that I don't share your gut feeling about it, but how is your CW going to take it if she thinks you don't approve of her way of dealing with colds? Are you sure she won't resent you for it, and then won't listen to anything you have to say, anyway?

hmb Sun 25-Jan-04 18:56:23

If it is just a cold then antibiotic will do *nothing* to help clear it up. Antibiotics only work on Bacteria and the common cold is cause by a virus. If the child gets a secondary bacterial infection after the cold, then the antibiotics will help to clear that up.

Prescribing antibiotics for viral infections helps to make bacteria drug resistant and the doc should not do it.

pupuce Sun 25-Jan-04 18:59:32

Steroids must be for the asthma?
I agree with Zebra...

Perkin Sun 25-Jan-04 19:01:00

As far as I know cdd has been diagnosed with asthama and that's why steriods are used; my limited research suggests that it's hard to diagnose under the age of 3, is that right?

I wasn't planning on approaching c/cw, just trying to get things sorted in my own head, I've been so worried.

misdee Sun 25-Jan-04 19:03:52

my dd doesnt often cough during the day but the night coughing is a nightmare. i would hate for anyone to say i'm just pumping her full of inhalors/steroids because they didnt feel she needed it. she is my child, i know what she needs.
this winter has been quite good for us with regards to coughs/colds etc, she only caught the fklu and not much else, but was chesty a few times and missed nursery twice. dd does get steroids if her asthma is bad, and th inhalors arent working, she has also been given oral steroids for her ezcema.

misdee Sun 25-Jan-04 19:04:56

with reagrds to dx asthma under 3's, then i was told it was under 5's. dd1 was dx at 1year old. since then she has had several attacks and she is not yet 4.

zebra Sun 25-Jan-04 19:16:51

Perkin: there was another thread about asthma diagnoses in very young... around where we live (Leicestershire) asthma gets diagnosed as young as 1-2 months old. It's such an umbrella term... the thing is, if a child responds to steroids well, than doctors may stick with treating it like asthma, even if it the condition isn't what most of us traditionally thought of as asthma.

If you want to help, I would imagine that trying to encourage your CW to give her DD probiotic foods could be very helpful, at least counteract (somewhat) the tendency for antibiotics to kill good as well as bad bacteria. Live yogurt, Yakult, if you search the board you can find lots of threads about probiotic foods. Maybe the CW would be open to the idea of giving her child probiotic supplements (someone say if they are ok for a child under 3yo?!) if you spin it as something good for becoming more resistent to colds?

Jimjams Sun 25-Jan-04 19:18:34

Repeated antibiotics did my ds1 absolutely no good at all. Not sure what you can do about it though. Suggest she sees a homeopath/cranial osteopath/ someone so that she's doing something when her dd has a cold (she sounds a bit over anxious taking her to the dr for colds - although may be fair enough if she has bad asthma or a ropey chest). Suggest she gives her probiotics perhaps? Wish I'd done that with ds1.

Are you sure she's having steroids and not something like salbutamol?

tamum Sun 25-Jan-04 19:18:35

If she's been diagnosed with asthma, I have to say I don't really think it is up to you to interfere. I tink it highly unlikely that multiple doctors would prescribe steroids unecessarily. I am completely with misdee, I would feel extremely upset to think anyone thought I was giving my child steroids without good reason. Again, as misdee says, unless you are there all night you are not in a position to judge how much she coughs. My ds gets steroids to try to make sure he doesn't have a fatal asthma attack, and maybe it is the same for your cousin's child.

Jimjams Sun 25-Jan-04 19:19:55

zebra- I gave ds2 probiotics when he was 6 weeks old as he had been given a course of antibiotics- HV said it was fine (she checked it out for me paediatrician was bloody useless and looked at me like I had suggested giving him morphine).

Perkin Sun 25-Jan-04 19:29:16

oops, it seems I have caused some offence, sorry, none intended at all.

Just to reiterate, have no intention of interfering, just trying to get some information for my own mind. Not judging either, sorry if it sounds like I am, just after factual information.

Also, we are sharing ahouse at the moment so I am there all night and I can say that one thing cdd can do is sleep!!! She goes to bed at 7 and wakes up at 7am, I can't remember the last time she woke in the night, it's a running joke how well she sleeps and always has.

bobthebaby Sun 25-Jan-04 21:22:48

I would definately suggest some probiotics, they are fine for even the youngest baby. The trouble is that the antibiotics are free and the probiotics aren't, so which is a parent going to do?

I would be worried about that many antibiotics, what if she gets really ill one day and nothing works. However I sort of agree with the people who have said its non of your business too. Not much help really.

nutcracker Sun 25-Jan-04 21:32:44

This is something which worries me from time to time as dd2 has asthma. From about 4mths to 14mths she was almost always on antibiotics and this would of probably continued if we hadn't fought for her asthma diagnosis. She also has a steroid inhaler which she has 2 puffs of morning and night. If she has a cold and her inhalers aren't helping then she usually has prednisolone steroids for 3 days. I hate having to give her theses things but if i didn't she would not be able to breath properly. I try to avoid antibiotics as much as possible, especially since she had so much so young (she's 4 now).
Do your relatives take their daughter to an asthma clinic ?? If they did i think they may suggest that her asthma is not being controlled (hence the cough).
I think it's bad that the docs keep continually perscribing antibiotics.

coppertop Sun 25-Jan-04 22:15:21

Ds1 (3.6yrs) has asthma. He goes through phases where every cold seems to turn into either an ear infection or a chest infection. Maybe your cousin's dd is going through a similar thing. I sometimes worry at the number of times he's needed antibiotics but I know that in each case the alternative would have been far worse.

I would def agree with nutcracker's suggestion about the asthma clinic.

robinw Tue 27-Jan-04 06:26:04

message withdrawn

nutcracker Tue 27-Jan-04 10:11:51

I've never heard of that Robinw - I will look out for that when i'm next buying toothpaste.

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