Journal article

Association of in utero antibiotic exposure on childhood ear infection trajectories: Results from a national birth cohort study

Yanhong J Hu, Jing Wang, Joseph Harwell, Melissa Wake



AIM: Most prescribed medicines during pregnancy are antibiotics, with unknown effects on a fetus and on the infant's acquired microbiome. This study investigates associations between in utero antibiotic exposure and ear infection trajectories over the first decade of life, hypothesising effects on early or persistent, rather than later-developing, ear infections. METHODS: Design and participants: The Longitudinal Study of Australian Children birth cohort recruited a nationally-representative sample of 5107 infants in 2004. MEASURES: Mothers reported antibiotic use in pregnancy when a child was 3-21 months old (wave 1), and ongoing problems with ear infection every 2 years spanning ages 0-1 t..

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Awarded by National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC)

Funding Acknowledgements

This study uses unit record data from Growing Up in Australia, the LSAC. The study is conducted in partnership between the Department of Social Services, the Australian Institute of Family Studies, and the Australian Bureau of Statistics. The findings and views reported in this paper are solely those of the authors. YJ Hu and J Wang had full access to all the data in the study and take responsibility for the integrity of the data and the accuracy of the data analysis. We thank the LSAC study participants and staff for their contributions and Australian Data Archive for data management. Research at the Murdoch Children's Research Institute (MCRI) is supported by the Victorian Government's Operational Infrastructure Support Program. The funding bodies did not play any role in the study. JW was supported by the MCRI Lifecourse Postdoctoral Fellowship. M Wake was supported by the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Senior Research Fellowship (1046518) and (Principal Research Fellowship 1160906) in this work.