Penicillin is an antimicrobial antibiotic for the prevention and control of infectious diseases in the human body. It belongs to a group of drugs that aim to neutralize the development of pathogenic bacteria in the human body.
This drug was discovered accidentally by the English scientist Alexander Fleming in 1928 on the basis of spores of the mold fungus Penicillium notatum. In Russia, the first samples of penicillin were obtained in 1932 by biologists Ermoleva and Balezina.
A positive effect is achieved due to the fact that aminopenicillanic acid destroys the cell walls of pathogenic bacteria, as a result of which it prevents their reproduction and they die.
Drugs of the penicillin family are used for various diseases that occur due to the weakening of the immune system and the ingestion of infectious bacteria such as staphylococci, streptococci, pneumococci, etc.
Two types of drugs from the penicillin family are most often used: penicillin G (benzylpenicillin) and penicillin V (phenoxymethylpenicillin).
The benzylpenicillin group includes Benzylpenicillin and its analogues (Retarpen, Benzylpenicillin-KMP and Benzylpenicillin sodium salt), and the phenoxymethylpenicillin group includes Phenoxymethylpenicillin and its analogues (Penicillin V, Penicillin B, Ospen and others). Now let’s look at some of these drugs in more detail.
Medicines similar to penicillin
For a long time, this antibiotic was the drug of choice for a variety of bacterial infections caused by staphylococci, streptococci, corynebacteria, neiseria, anaerobic pathogens, actinomycetes and spirochetes. Now penicillin is mainly used for the following indications:
- bacterial myocarditis;
- treatment of infectious pathologies in pregnant women;
The undisputed advantage of penicillin is the low range of side effects, which allows it to be used for almost all categories of patients. Sometimes there are various allergic reactions — urticaria, rash, anaphylactic shock, and others. With prolonged use, cases of Candida infection have been described.
However, the active use of penicillin in clinical practice has led to the development of resistance. For example, staphylococci began to produce a special enzyme penicillinase, which is able to break down this antibiotic. Therefore, there is an urgent question about how to replace penicillin.
Amoxil (Amoxicillin) is a newer drug from the penicillin group.
The drug also has a bactericidal effect, easily passes through the blood-brain barrier. It is partially metabolized in the liver and excreted from the patient’s body by the kidneys.
Among the disadvantages of amoxicillin is the need for multiple doses. Today, this drug is widely used for the treatment of respiratory tract infections (pharyngitis, angina, sinusitis, tracheitis, bronchitis), genitourinary system (cystitis, urethritis, pyelonephritis), as well as for salmonellosis, leptospirosis, listeriosis, borreliosis and stomach ulcers caused by Helicobacter infection.
Amoxicillin should not be prescribed for hypersensitivity to penicillin-type drugs, infectious mononucleosis (there is a specific rash or liver damage). Side effects include various allergic reactions, Stevens-Johnson syndrome, dyspeptic disorders, transient anemia, and headache.
Adults are usually prescribed amoxicillin 500 mg 3 times a day, and children with a body weight of less than 40 kg — at the rate of 25-45 mg per 1 kg. Treatment for diseases with mild or moderate severity of the course is carried out for a week, with more serious pathologies, the course is extended to 10 or more days.