Women who use antibiotics for at least two months in their 50s are at increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease, study finds
- Antibiotic use at age 50 or older could increase a woman’s risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease, new study finds
- Women who took drugs had brains that were on average three to four years older than their peers
- There was also a noticeable degrading effect, as women who took the drugs further scored worse on cognitive tests.
- Experts believe this is due to the way the gut microbiome and the bacteria it contains are affected by the drugs
- If you or someone you know suffers from cognitive decline, Alzheimer’s or a similar condition after taking antibiotics, contact us at [email protected]
Using antibiotics for long periods of time can damage a middle-aged woman’s brain and even increase her risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease, a new study has found.
Researchers from Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, and Rush University, Chicago, Illinois, found that women who took antibiotics for at least two consecutive months during their 50s consistently performed worse on cognitive tests.
Scoring included measures of processing speed, brain function, attention and memory capacity.
The researchers write that antibiotic use aged the women about three to four years older than their peers, and even increased their risk of developing devastating cognitive impairments down the line.
Women in their 50s who use antibiotics for at least two months are at increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease and also perform worse on cognitive tests (file photo)
The researchers, who published their findings last week in OLPcollected data from more than 14,000 women who participated in the biennial Nurses’ Health Study II.
As part of the study, the women would indicate whether they had used any medication in the past two years and whether they suffered from any health problems – along with other questions.
In 2009, when many participants were in their 50s, a question about antibiotics was included in the survey.
In 2016, seven years later, the women underwent a cognitive exam to determine a variety of cognitive factors.
Women who reported at least two consecutive months of antibiotic use universally performed worse than their peers.
There was also a clear sign of cognitive decline over time, as women who were further away from their middle-aged antibiotic use tested even worse.
The exact mechanism that causes antibiotics to have such a terrifying effect on the brain can’t be pinpointed, but experts have a potential hunch.
Researchers point to the gut-brain axis for cognitive decline experienced by women.
A person’s gut has more control over their body and brain than they realize, and previous studies have even shown that the gut microbiome can even determine a person’s personality.
Previous studies have also shown that gut health is linked to cognitive conditions like Alzheimer’s disease and others in humans and animals.
Experts have long known that antibiotics can affect cognitive processes because the body’s gut microbiome has broad control over processes across the body, and bacteria in the microbiome are harmed by the drugs.
The gut microbiota is affected by antibiotics, which can kill and alter the body’s stomach population.
From Hippocrates in 400 BC. Around 2000, humans knew that there was a connection between the internal processes of the body and the external manifestations of personality and other cognitive functions.
In 2016, researchers from Johns Hopkins University found that antibiotic treatments can alter a person’s gut microbiota and therefore harm people with psychiatric conditions.
“Further research is needed, but ours suggests that if we can prevent infections and minimize antibiotic treatment in people with mental illness, we may be able to prevent the onset of manic episodes,” said Dr. Robert Yolken, researcher in Baltimore, Maryland. , school, wrote.
Why the microbiome has so much control over the body has yet to be determined, but it has been the subject of expert investigation for decades.