Sunday, December 04, 2005

RU486 and Prophylactic Antibiotics

Ever since the occurrence of a few deaths in conjunction with taking RU486 (putatively attributed to Clostridium sordelii though there is not an established causal relationship between the two), I've wondered aloud on many comment boards why a course of prophylactic antibiotics isn't prescribed along with RU486 as a precaution. After all, the black box warning applied to the drug implies to me that if there's a way to prevent the infection, it ought to be pursued.

I finally did some googling today, and found in several places that the risk of infection is assessed by most doctors as low enough that antibiotics would not at all be a necessary companion the Mifepristone. The patients in which C. sordelii speticemia was confirmed did show symptoms of the infection after all, so a doctor and patient that looked out for diarrhea, vomiting and weakness in a patient that had taken the drug would probably be taking all necessary precautions to ensure a safe termination of the pregnancy. Check out the link above for more info (and theories on the relationship between RU486 and the organism in these deaths).

Now you know.

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