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Suppose that I get a bacterial infection, which my immune system deals with. Are there any remnant bacteria, or are they all gone? Now consider the same scenario, but having been treated with a full course of antibiotics - are there any bacteria left alive? Now suppose I take a partial course of the antibiotics - enough to reduce the bacterial population to a level that my own immune system can deal with by itself. In this last case, if I beat the infection, is there any chance of bacteria having evolved resistance to those antibiotics, or are they all dead?

I ask having recently read an article claiming that conventional wisdom on antibiotics might not be as useful as once thought.

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    $\begingroup$ Have you read anything on resistant bacteria? $\endgroup$ – rg255 Jun 13 '16 at 5:14
  • $\begingroup$ @rg255 yes; what are you getting at? $\endgroup$ – askvictor Jun 13 '16 at 5:18
  • $\begingroup$ I think @rg255 is on the generation of resistance by not finishing antibiotical treatments... $\endgroup$ – Chris Jun 13 '16 at 6:16
  • $\begingroup$ Which is exactly what I'm interested in, but am questioning the 'accepted' wisdom of the matter. $\endgroup$ – askvictor Jun 13 '16 at 7:19
  • $\begingroup$ Can you point out exactly where the article states "a full dose of antibiotics is somewhat arbitrarily determined and based on a single case study"? (It did state recommended "antibiotic courses are often arbitrary; they may reflect long-standing convention or be based on a manufacturer’s decision during an initial drug trial." Note that an initial drug trial is light years from a single case study. (cont.) $\endgroup$ – anongoodnurse Jun 13 '16 at 22:14

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