Possible degradation in the effectiveness of antibiotics in the treatment of human diseases

Graham Shepherd muhero at globalnet.co.uk
Fri Jul 9 13:48:27 EST 1999

Bill Angel wrote in message <6zqh3.473$Sw3.11545470 at newsie.cais.net>...
> Certain diseases in humans, such as Lyme disease, are treated with
>antibiotics such as Amoxicillin. It appears to have become a routine
>practice in veterinary medicine to utilize antibiotics, such as
>Amoxicillin, to treat infections in domesticated animals. There are, in
>fact, places on the Web where you can purchase "Non-Prescription
>Antibiotics" which contain Ampicillin, Amoxicillin, Tetracycline,
>Penicillin, etc. Since certain diseases, such as Lyme disease, can infect
>both animals AND humans, is it not possible that a drug-resistant disease
>that can infect both humans and animals could emerge from the
>indiscriminate use of these antibiotics to treat ailments in dogs and
> My interest in this subject was prompted by the fact that I am
>currently taking Amoxicillin to treat an infection, and was impressed with
>its effectiveness. In browsing the web for further information on this
>antibiotic, I discovered that veterinarians are dispensing it to treat
>infections in house cats! I love dogs and cats as much as the next person,
>but it would be regrettable is future generations of humans were deprived
>of the benefits of effective and inexpensive antibiotics because humans in
>our generation want to keep their dogs and cats alive and well for as long
>as is possible.
> If anyone knows of any scientific research that establishes a
>degradation in the effectiveness of antibiotics in the treatment of human
>diseases because of the concerns mentioned above,I would be interested in
>examining it. Thanks,
>--- Bill Angel

There probably aren't too many bacterial infections that commonly affect
cats and dogs and people. Careful veterinary use of antibiotics for pets
shouldn't cause a significant risk of resitant bacteria. What is much more
worrying is the use of antibiotics as growth promoters in intensive pig and
poultry rearing; these animals are not sick or in need of treatment and they
are right in the food chain. What's happening to the antibiotic
susceptibility of the salmonella and campylobacter species commonly found in
these animals?


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