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There are several limitations to this study. Some Internet vendors also attempt to skirt US regulations by operating in countries outside the United States but marketing to US consumers. Self-administration of antibiotics occurs in all countries, but it is particularly problematic where the use of antimicrobials without a prescription is encouraged by the lack of laws restricting antibiotic sales or a failure to enforce the laws. Thus, vendors targeting foreign-language speakers in the United States would have been missed. The frequency of relevant Web sites declined substantially after the first 300. Thus, as soon as patients receive over-the-counter antibiotics and self-treating self-limiting illnesses with drugs, such as upper-respiratory tract infections without complications, they are likely to suggest that the antibiotic was effective, and self-medicate in the future. The extended delay between diagnosis and treatment receipt has consequences for resolving self-limiting conditions and storing unused treatment. Our final list of URLs included 184 links to single vendors of antibiotics. Further education aimed at patients and the community, as well as increased regulation and application of existing guidelines, can help control this potentially vast reservoir of antibiotics. In usual face-to-face health care visits for respiratory tract infections during which antibiotics are prescribed, more than 90% of prescriptions are filled on the day of the office visit. Fourth, we categorized whether a person could buy antibiotics, especially broad-spectrum antibiotics, in quantities greater than what would be considered adequate 1 course of treatment for acute respiratory tract infection. Third, we categorized the classes of antibiotics available for purchase. Even with these strategies, however, it was difficult to know whether one corporation still owns and manages several locations. This reservoir of antibiotics is likely to be used inappropriately-the Web sites promote self-diagnosis and self-medication, and antibiotics are likely to be used in inappropriate dosages. Because of its effect on morbidity and mortality, antibiotic resistance is considered a threat to US health and national security by the Institute of Medicine and the Infectious Diseases Society of America. Several studies suggest that antibiotic prescribing for viral illnesses, respiratory tract infections being one example, has declined in the last decade.