Celiac.com 11/30/2020 - Despite some good data on childhood antibiotic exposure, researchers still don't know much about the possible connections between antibiotic exposure in the first two years of life, and the risk of childhood immunological, metabolic, and neurobehavioral health conditions. A team of researchers recently set out to see what they could learn about potential connections between antibiotic exposure in the first two years of life, and the risk of childhood immunological, metabolic, and neurobehavioral health conditions.
The research team included Zaira Aversa, MD, PhD; Elizabeth J. Atkinson, MS; Marissa J. Schafer, PhD; Regan N. Theiler, MD, PhD; Walter A. Rocca, MD; Martin J. Blaser, MD, and Nathan K. LeBrasseur, PhD. They are variously affiliated with the Robert and Arlene Kogod Center on Aging, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN; the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN; the Division of Biomedical Statistics and Informatics, Department of Health Sciences Research, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN; the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN; the Division of Epidemiology, Department of Health Sciences Research, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN; and the Department of Neurology, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN; and the Center for Advanced Biotechnology and Medicine, Rutgers University, Piscataway, NJ.
This study included 14,572 children, just over half of whom were boys. About 70% of the children had received at least 1 antibiotic prescription during the first 2 years of life. The team found that early antibiotic exposure was tied to an increased risk of childhood-onset asthma, allergic rhinitis, atopic dermatitis, celiac disease, overweight, obesity, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. The number, type, and timing of antibiotic exposure all influenced the connections.
Moreover, children exposed to antibiotics had a higher odds of developing multiple conditions, especially if they had received multiple prescriptions. The team's data points out strong associations between early life antibiotic exposure and several childhood health disorders.
The team calls for additional research to create practical guidelines for maximizing the benefits and minimizing the risk of antibiotics exposure in children.
Read more at the Mayo Clinic Proceedings