Antimicrobial Agents Discussion Essay

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Must include course text as reference:

Arcangelo, V. P., Peterson, A. M., Wilbur, V., & Reinhold, J. A. (Eds.). (2017). Pharmacotherapeutics for advanced practice: A practical approach (4th ed.). Ambler, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. Antimicrobial Agents Discussion Essay

Antimicrobial agents are essential components in the treatment of various bacterial infections as they help to kill or prevent the growth of microbes such as bacteria, fungi, and protozoans. Prior to the discovery of antimicrobial agents, treatment options for patients with bacterial infections were limited. For many patients, treatment often resulted in the amputation of limbs or even death. Today, treatment options for bacterial infections typically have a more positive prognosis. Due to the various types of infections presented in patients, it is essential to be able to identify the underlying cause of the infection—whether bacterial or viral—before recommending drug treatments. This will help you identify whether or not an antimicrobial agent would be appropriate and which specific agent would target the infection. In this Assignment, you consider the appropriate use of antimicrobial agents for infections.
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To prepare:
Review this week’s media presentation on principles of antimicrobial therapy, as well as Chapter 8 of the Arcangelo and Peterson text.
Consider the categories of antimicrobial agents.
Think about differences between viral and bacterial infections.
Reflect on why proper identification of the infection is key to selecting the proper antimicrobial agent.
By Day 7
Write a 2- to 3- page paper that addresses the following:

Describe the categories of antimicrobial agents.
Describe differences between viral and bacterial infections.
Explain why proper identification of viral and bacterial infections is key to selecting the proper antimicrobial agent. Antimicrobial Agents Discussion Essay

Link for media:

https://class.waldenu.edu/bbcswebdav/institution/USW1/201910_27/MS_NURS/NURS_6521/adobePresenter/Week08/index.htm
Describe the categories of antimicrobial agents.

Antimicrobial agents refers to chemical compounds used to prevent microorganism pathogenesis, whether caused by a virus, fungi, parasite, bacteria or any other microorganism. The most common classification of antimicrobial agents is on the basis of targeted microorganisms. The first category is anti-parasitic compounds that prevent the growth and proliferation of pathogenic parasites such as anthelmintics. The second category is anti-viral compounds that halt or slow down the pathogenic activity of viruses such as tamiflu. The third category is anti-fungal agents that halt or prevent fungal activity such as miconazole. The final category is anti-bacterial agents that inhibit the pathogenic activity of bacteria such as zithromax (Langdon & Breathnach, 2016). Other than classification on the basis of targeted microorganisms, classification can be based on the mode of action that identifies five categories. The first category is agents that inhibit cell wall synthesis to include poly-peptides (such as vancomycin and bacitracin) and beta-lactems (such as imipenem, aztreonam, cephalosporins, and penicillins). The second category is agents that inhibit protein synthesis to include clindamycin, chloramphenicol, macrolides, tetracyclins, and aminoglycosides. The third category is agents that inhibit the activity of essential metabolites (folates) such as trimethoprim and sulfonamide. The fourth category is agents that injure the plasma membrane to include miconazole, amphotericin B, mystatin and polymyxin B. The final category is agents that inhibit the transcription and replication of nucleic acids to include rifampin and quinolones (Weston, Burgess & Roberts, 2017).

Describe differences between viral and bacterial infections.

Perhaps the most basic difference between viral and bacterial infections is the cause. Bacterial infection is caused by bacteria while viral infection is caused by viruses. A more in-depth analysis of the difference between the two reveals that bacteria are micro-organisms that present as single-celled entities that can thrive in a wide array of environmental conditions to include extreme cold, extreme heat and the range of conditions between the two extremes. Examples of bacterial infections include urinary tract infections, strep throat and tuberculosis. Diagnosis occurs through bacterial cultures. Treatment of bacterial infection entails the use of antibiotics (Coico & Sunshine, 2015; Copstead-Kirkhorn & Banasik, 2015). On the other hand, viruses are microscopic organisms that are smaller than bacteria and lack features that are common in cells such as a cell wall or membrane. A typical virus has a small genome of approximately 20 kb with about 10 genes that code for glycoprotein virion envelope, nucleoprotein, non-structural proteins, matrix protein, and viral polymerase. Unlike bacteria, virus are inert when outside a living host and only become active when inside the host. Once a virus gains entry into the body, it invades the cells and redirects their activities to reproduce viruses. Some of the conditions caused by viruses include common colds, AIDS, and chickenpox. Diagnosis for viral infection occurs through enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), antigen tests, virus isolation, and reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) (Coico & Sunshine, 2015; Copstead-Kirkhorn & Banasik, 2015). Antimicrobial Agents Discussion Essay

Importance of proper identification of viral and bacterial infections

Proper identification of the causative agent of a microbial infection is important for two reasons. Firstly, it helps in identifying the correct antimicrobial agent that would facilitate treatment efforts. If a virus is the cause of the infection then anti-viral agent would be required but if a bacteria is the cause of the infection then an anti-bacterial agent would be required. Secondly, it helps in preempting drug resistance whereby the body or infection agent interacts with the drug through evolutionary processes that render the drug ineffective. Finally, it helps in determining the required dosage to effectively clear the infection from the body (Elschner et al., 2012).

References

Coico, R. & Sunshine, G. (2015). Immunology: a short course (7th ed.). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley Blackwell.

Copstead-Kirkhorn, L. & Banasik, J. (2014). Pathophysiology (5th ed.). Amsterdam: Elsevier Health Sciences.

Elschner, M., Cutler, S., Weidmann, M. & Butaye, P. (2012). BSL3 and BSL4 agents: epidemiology, microbiology and practical guidelines. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley- Blackwell.

Langdon, B. & Breathnach, A. (2016). Learning microbiology through clinical consultation. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Weston, D., Burgess, A. & Roberts, S. (2017). Infection prevention and control at a glance. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley- Blackwell. Antimicrobial Agents Discussion Essay

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