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By Stan Deresinski, MD, FACP, Editor, Infectious Disease Alert
-Do you prescribe antibiotics to relieve tension?
-Do you prescribe antibiotics more than other physicians but are able to hide it?
-Do you sometimes feel guilty about the way you prescribe antibiotics?
-Do you have a strong urge to prescribe antibiotics at a particular time of day?
-Have you lost ambition since you began prescribing antibiotics in this way?
-Has another physician advised you to stop or cut down your prescribing?
-Are you harder to get along with when you are heavily prescribing?
-Have you ever tried to cut back?
-Do you have difficulty sleeping a full night?
-Have you ever been in trouble with the antibiotic police?
-Have you ever done anything while prescribing that you don’t remember (have a blackout)?
-Have you ever promised yourself you would cut back on your prescribing and then broken that promise?
-Have you ever tried to convince people that you were not prescribing antibiotics when you were?
-Do you wish people would mind their own business about your antibiotic prescribing-that they stop telling you what to do?
-Have you ever switched from one kind of antibiotic to another in the hope that this would keep you from going over the edge?
-Have you had to have an eye-opener (ie, prescribed an antibiotic immediately upon awakening, in the last year)?
-Do you envy people who can prescribe antibiotics without getting into trouble?
-For those who have answered yes to one or more of these questions, I have begun the
development of a 12-step program. Unfortunately, I have only been able to develop half of a 12-step program
-You must admit that you are powerless over your antibiotic prescribing.
-You must believe that a power (an antibiotic guru) greater than yourself can restore you to sanity.
-You must make a decision to turn your will and life over to the care of that power.
-You must make a searching and fearless moral inventory of yourself.
-You must admit to the power and to yourself the exact nature of your misprescribing.
-You must humbly ask the power to remove your antibiotic shortcomings.
* Lockwood WR. Letter: Antibiotics anonymous. N Engl J Med 1974;290:465-466.