Fda antibiotics animals, FDA Antibiotic Regulations Agency's Small Step Ignores Larger Issue of Antibiotic Resistance in Farm Animals. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration prohibited some unapproved uses of antibiotics in livestock on Wednesday.
Fda antibiotics animals
Farmers will no longer be able to administer a class of antibiotics called cephalosporins to cattle, pigs, chicken and turkeys in unapproved doses or frequencies, or as a means of preventing disease, the agency said. Also prohibited: using drugs not originally intended for use in livestock. Some limited extra-label use will still be permitted, including prescription drugs in less-commonly eaten animals such as rabbits and ducks.
In people, cephalosporins are used to treat pneumonia and other infections -- including Salmonella. In animals, antibiotics are often used to promote growth. But the practice may have helped some strains of bacteria become resistant to antibiotics, and therefore harder to treat when they strike humans.
"Cephalosporins are commonly used in humans to treat pneumonia as well as to treat skin and soft tissue infections. In addition, they are used in the treatment of pelvic inflammatory disease, diabetic foot infections, and urinary tract infections. If cephalosporins are not effective in treating these diseases, doctors may have to use drugs that are not as effective or that have greater side effects," the FDA said in the statement.
While the restriction has been praised by organizations such as the Pew Campaign on Human Health and Industrial Farms and the Alliance for the Prudent Use of Antibiotics as an "important first step" toward addressing the adverse human health consequences resulting from the overuse of antibiotics in farm animals, it is ultimately a limited move in the grand scheme of the issue.
In fact, the use of cephalosporins to treat food-producing animals has been declining in recent years in favor of alternate classes of antibiotics. In 2010, the FDA reported cephalosporins constituted less than 0.25 percent of antibiotic sales for farm animals domestically. The industry purchased about 91,000 pounds of the drug in 2010, considerably less than any other antibiotic, as well as a 41 percent decrease from 2009.