Anthroposophic Hospital Successfully Treats Child Pneumonia with Only One Third the Antibiotic Use of Other Hospitals

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Brussels and Filderstadt, February 19, 2020. A study published in the European Journal of Integrative Medicine shows that among 252 children hospitalized for pneumonia at the anthroposophic hospital Filderklinik in Germany, good outcomes were achieved with 32% receiving antibiotics, a third of the scientific literature reported prescribing rate of 88-98%. This is an important finding as over-prescription of antibiotics is a leading cause in the growing global health risk of antimicrobial resistance, according to the World Health Organization.

“We carefully assess and reassess each child”, says Dr Jan Vagedes, head of the pediatric department at the Filderklinik and the study’s main author. “We see that many otherwise healthy children can overcome a bacterial pneumonia when receiving the right supportive care, without need for antibiotics.”

The pediatric department at Filderklinik has many years of experience with rational antibiotic use. No complications occurred among the non-antibiotic managed children; their hospitalization time was even shorter than those who received antibiotics, but this was due to somewhat sicker children in the antibiotic managed group. 

The authors further analyzed if the pneumonia cases were of likely viral or bacterial origin and found that the antibiotic prescribing was 26% among presumed viral cases and 51% among presumed bacterial cases.

All children received anthroposophic care such as chest compresses and anthroposophic medications; the study could thus not determine to what extent the anthroposophic approach contributed to the positive results. 

“Antibiotics are and remain definitely needed in certain cases but we feel that the integration of conventional and anthroposophic medicine allows us to use antibiotics more sparsely”, says Dr Vagedes. “In addition to reducing the risk of anti-microbial resistance, using less antibiotics helps preserve the gut microbiome, which has long-term health benefits all the way into adulthood.” 

More information:

The full study is available here.

For further inquiries, contact:

Elisa Baldini, Secretary General of IVAA:

About IVAA:

The IVAA, or International Federation of Anthroposophic Medical Associations, promotes the recognition of Anthropoosophic Medicine and its implementation in health care systems. Our vision is a world where the benefits of anthroposophic medicine are widely recognised, and where patients and doctors have ready access to complementary anthroposophic medicines and treatments that improve healthcare outcomes.

About the Filderklinik:

The Filderklinik is an integrative medicine hospital in Southern Germany that combines conventional and anthroposophic medicine in an acute care hospital that is fully integrated into the German health care system.