Contact with antibiotics can affect children’s health – the practice of healing

Cesarean deliveries: harmful effects of antibiotics

at cesarean deliveries She was the mother of the world decades before the cut Antibiotics administered. This is done to protect against any infection after childbirth. But in this way, these drugs reach New Baby. This can contact baby health It has a lasting effect.

A new study examined the effect of the timing of maternal antimicrobial infection prevention during cesarean deliveries – before the operation began versus after umbilical cord clamping – on the development of the newborn’s intestinal flora. The work, published in the journal Gut Microbes, provides evidence that exposure to antibiotics during cesarean delivery can have a lasting impact on the health of newborns.

More cesarean deliveries

As the German Center for Research on Infection (DZIF) wrote in a recent edition, the number of cesarean deliveries is increasing worldwide. In order to avoid complications of infection in mothers, antimicrobial prophylaxis is the norm in intraoperative maternity clinics.

International guidelines recommend that antimicrobials be given for prophylaxis 30 to 120 minutes before the procedure, which means that newborns are treated with antibiotics while they are in the womb.

Animal studies have shown that exposure to antibiotics before or during childbirth has a marked effect on the composition of the gut microbiome – the sum of the gut microbiota – with potential long-term consequences for the offspring; These include an increased risk of asthma, allergies and childhood obesity (obesity).

Significantly affects the development of the intestinal microflora

In a study conducted as part of the DZIF, a research team from Lübeck, Kiel and Würzburg has now investigated the extent to which antibiotics are administered during caesarean section – before the abdominal wall is opened or after the umbilical cord is clamped – influences bacterial colonization of the gut of newborns and influences the development of resistance Antimicrobials.

To do this, the scientists compared the composition of the microbial flora in stool samples (meconium and samples taken at one month and one year of age) from infants whose mothers received antibiotics either immediately before a caesarean section or just after the umbilical procedure. The rope is installed.

Using genetic sequencing, the researchers determined the microbial composition of different stool samples and developed prediction models for the resulting metabolic variations in the intestinal flora.

“Our study shows that the timing of prophylactic antibiotic administration can significantly influence the development of the gut microbiota – in particular the predominance of certain bacterial genera and metabolic pathways – in children of the first year of life.”Study director Professor Christoph Hartel explains.

antibiotic resistance genes

In addition, researchers have discovered that genes for antibiotic resistance are acquired in the first few days of life.

In the course of the study, which was conducted as a pilot study with a small number of 40 participants in total, no clear relationship was established between the presence of resistance genes and prenatal contact with antibiotics.

“The presence of resistance genes in the first few days of life is a warning signal and indicates that early contact with antibiotics should be avoided as much as possible so that antimicrobial treatments are not jeopardized later by existing resistance.”, says joint study leader Professor Jan Robb, DZIF scientist and director of the Clinic for Infectious Diseases and Microbiology at the University Hospital Schleswig-Holstein/University of Lübeck. (ad)

Author and source information

This text complies with the requirements of the specialized medical literature, clinical guidelines, and current studies and has been verified by medical professionals.


  • German Center for Infection Research: Contact with antibiotics during caesarean section can have lasting impact on newborn health (Accessed: May 9, 2022), German Center for Infection Research
  • Verena Bosong et al: The timing of antimicrobial prophylaxis for caesarean section is critical for the growth of the gut microbiome in prenatally born infants. In: Gut Microbes, (Published: 02/20/2022), Gut Microbes

important note:
This article contains general advice only and should not be used for self-diagnosis or treatment. It cannot replace a visit to the doctor.

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