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New study discovers impact of certain antibiotics on young children

A team of NYU Langone Medical Center researchers recently published a new study in Nature Communications regarding how antibiotics could have an impact on young children's development. Science Daily reports that these researchers treated a group of female mice with two commonly used children's antibiotics and studied the results in comparison to untreated mice. The treated mice gained more weight over time and developed larger bones than the mice that were not given any antibiotics. The gut microbiome in the intestinal tract was also found to be disrupted during this frequent dosage. 

One researcher stated that the results they found support previous studies that discovered correlations where young children who received early rounds of antibiotics for infections tended to be heavier children later. Though this study was made singularly on mice, the researchers said that their evidence brings light to childhood obesity and the use of antibiotics without considering the biological risks. These results are not yet clear as to what they mean for children, and the researchers did note that many antibiotics are necessary and life-saving for several different conditions.

Time reported that they cautioned through their research that sometimes the risks may be greater than the benefits in some milder cases for younger children and that doctors and parents should be aware and judicious about prescriptions and dosages. They noted that this data could help shape guidelines for prescriptions in the future.

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