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Researchers find high prevalence of liver failure caused by antimicrobial medications

Category: Liver Diseases

Individuals who have been on antimicrobial medications for an extended period of time may benefit from liver testing, as a new study has found that these drugs are among the leading contributors to liver injury, which may ultimately result in failure of the organ.

Researchers from the Medical University of South Carolina said that the problem of drug-induced liver injury is growing. Many substances, from herbal remedies to illicit drugs, can cause extensive damage to the organ. However, researchers hypothesized that antimicrobial medications may be among the worst substance for liver health.

After examining 1,198 liver failure cases, researchers found that a relatively high percentage of patients had taken antimicrobial medications. Additionally, they noted that 71 percent of drug-induced liver failure cases occurred in women.

"Our findings confirm prior medical evidence that found a high female predominance in drug-induced liver injury, acute liver failure, suggesting that women may be more susceptible to liver injury or use more prescription drugs than men," said Adrian Reuben, who led the study.

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