WEEK 8 ASSIGNMENT: ANTIMICROBIALSWeek 8 Assignment: AntimicrobialsAntimicrobial agents are medications that inhibit the growth of pathogenic microorganisms and are an essential component in the treatment of bacterial infections. When healthcare professionals integrated antimicrobials into medicine in the 1930s antibiotics were substances produced by microorganisms that selectively inhibit the growth of another (Jethwa, 2016). Research has evolved, however, and many antibiotics are now manufactured syntheticallyand have comparable efficacy. The purpose of this paper is to explain the classification of severalkey antibiotics, summarize the differences between bacterial and viral infections, and present evidence-based information about safe prescriptive practices. Categories of Antimicrobial AgentsAntimicrobials encompass a diverse variety of anti-infective agents and antibiotic medications that suppress microorganisms such as bacteria, fungi, viruses, or parasites (Leekha, Terrell, & Edson, 2011). Experts often classify antimicrobial drugs according to their mechanismof action. β-lactam ring antibiotics (penicillin, cephalosporin), for instance, inhibit cell wall synthesis or function whereas protein synthesis inhibitors (tetracycline, macrolides) work at different stages of prokaryotic mRNA translation like initiation, elongation, and termination. Nucleic acid inhibitors (metronidazole, fluoroquinolones, sulfonamides, rifampicin) prevent DNA or replication and synthesis (Arcangelo, Peterson, & Reinhold, 2017). Penicillin and cephalosporin are structurally similar but vary in the pathways of absorption and excretion as well as the infectious agents they target (Arcangelo et al., 2017) Many penicillins are not digested well due to the acid content of the stomach and must be administered parenterally. Penicillin are excreted by the kidneys, may cause nausea and diarrhea,and are the agents of choice for treating gram-positive infections such as endocarditis and 2
WEEK 8 ASSIGNMENT: ANTIMICROBIALSpenicillin-sensitive streptococci (Eades et al., 2017). Cephalosporins are well absorbed in the GI tract and primarily excreted by the kidneys, and common side effects include nausea, dizziness, and rash (Arcangelo et al., 2017). Newer fifth-generation cephalosporins (ceftaroline, ceftobiproleposess) possess a unique spectrum of bactericidal activity among β-lactams and are used to treat complicated SSTIs and community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) in adults (Eades et al., 2017).