How Do Narrow-Spectrum And Broad-Spectrum Antibiotics Work?

Bacterial infections are the most common cause of a majority of diseases. We encounter countless different types of bacterial strains every day. As a result, we develop mild to severe infectious diseases. For which, the doctors prescribe us different types of medicines, mainly Antibiotics, that can easily kill the bacterial entities residing in our body.

How Do Narrow-Spectrum And Broad-Spectrum Antibiotics Work

Antibiotics are the first choice of drugs used to treat bacterial diseases. Antibiotic drugs work by disrupting the normal metabolic processes of bacteria that are essential for their survival. The drugs can also dissolve certain bacterial structures, such as their cell wall, and help kill the bacterial cell. All these effects depend entirely on the selection of an antibiotic agent and the type of bacterial entity present in the body.

Depending on the action required to treat your bacterial infection, your antibiotics are selected. Your doctor may prescribe you a Narrow-spectrum antibiotic agent or a Broad-spectrum antibiotic agent. Let’s learn what these agents are and how they help to treat your conditions.

What are Narrow-spectrum Antibiotics?

Narrow-Spectrum antibiotics are a class of drugs that can be active against only a small group of bacterial entities. These bactericidal agents can only be effective against either gram-positive bacteria or gram-negative bacteria. These drugs can only kill or limit the growth of a single bacterial species.

How Do They Work?

Narrow spectrum antibiotic agents are found to be both bacteriostatic as well as bactericidal. But these drugs can only act on very specific bacteria since it’s target-oriented. They can only target one single bacterial species at a time and cause hindrance in its growth and multiplication. Some of the most common narrow-spectrum antibiotics prepared by a majority of manufacturers here include the following examples:

    • Fidaxomicin
    • Sarecycline
    • Azithromycin
    • Clarithromycin
    • Erythromycin
    • Clindamycin

What are Broad-spectrum Antibiotics?

Broad-spectrum antibiotics are antibacterial agents having a broad killing spectrum for bacterial entities. These types of antibiotics can be used to kill a wide variety of disease-causing bacterial strains. Broad-spectrum antibiotics are effective against both bacterial groups, i.e. Gram-positive as well as Gram-negative bacteria.

How Do They Work?

Broad-spectrum antibiotic agents have strong bacteriostatic and bactericidal actions against infectious bacterial strains. These drugs are employed to treat infections caused by unknown bacteria so the action is more general and not target specific. Broad-spectrum antibiotics work by destroying the outer protective wall of the bacterial cell, rendering them helpless against the body’s neutrophils.

Some common examples of broad-spectrum antibiotics are:

    • Ampicillin
    • Amoxicillin
    • Carbapenems
    • Tazobactam
    • Azithromycin
    • Doxycycline

Narrow-Spectrum VS Broad-Spectrum Antibiotics– Which Are Better?

How Do Narrow-Spectrum And Broad-Spectrum Antibiotics Work

Antibiotics are antibacterial agents used to help your body fight disease-causing bacterial entities. Both types of antibiotic drugs have an effective preventative technique to kill the bacteria.

Using narrow or broad-spectrum antibiotics, the sole focus is to inhibit infectious bacterial growth inside the body. The only difference is that narrow-spectrum are more target-oriented, they are preferred for the initial stages of treatment. But when the causative agent is unknown, broad-spectrum antibiotics are used to get immediate killing action.

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