The Food and Drug Administration has grown increasingly concerned about the prevalence of bacteria that is resistant to antibiotics. Although antibiotics are certainly a valid treatment option when dealing with infectious organisms, over the course of time, certain organisms have developed a resistance to the very drugs meant to fight them.
In a new report, two members of the FDA explain the organization’s efforts to protect consumers from this threat. It starts with ensuring that livestock are only provided with antibiotics for the treatment of sickness as opposed to administration for the purpose of fostering growth. When we eat livestock that has been given a steady stream of antibiotics, the worry is that we ourselves will be more susceptible to antibiotic-resistant organisms.
Consumers can also take steps to protect themselves from these types of bacteria. For one thing, you can be more discerning when it comes to the taking of antibiotics. If you suffer from a simple cough or even a minor case of the flu, don’t push your doctor to provide you with antibiotics. Not only will this not really treat the illness itself, but it could lead to the development of resistant organisms.
You can also take steps to limit your exposure to bacteria altogether. Cook your food all the way through and keep kitchen surfaces clean so that bacteria can’t fester and spread.
Consumer Reports wants to direct our attention to a report warning of the danger that presents itself when animals are given too many antibiotics.
An editorial going by the title “Pig Out” and featured in a journal known as Nature stresses the need for farmers to abstain from giving their livestock large amounts of non-veterinary antibiotics, a practice typically carried out not to prevent infections, but rather to promote quick growth within the animals. Unfortunately, according to the editorial, doing so could cause various types of bacteria to become resistant to the antibiotics. This in turn presents a danger to humans, since we end up eating the animals and those resistant bacteria can pass to us.
Numerous parties have called on the Food and Drug Administration to begin regulating the overuse of antibiotics, and the organization recently took tentative steps toward doing just that. Right now, the meat and poultry industries are responsible for buying up around 80% of antibiotics on the market. Some people have gone so far as to call the continued rampant distribution of antibiotics to livestock a public health crisis.
Consumer Reports, for their part, says that consumers worried about this troubling trend can find food from the supermarket that does not contain antibiotics. However, they also stress that a lack of clarity on product labels makes it difficult to to discern the true nature of many such items.
A judge is telling the Food and Drug Administration to reconsider their position on a petition filed in order to get the organization to look into the safety of animal feed antibiotics.
In both 1999 and 2005, concerned citizens requested that the FDA withdraw medically important antibiotics from animals that would be used as livestock. The worry was that by including these antibiotics in the food supply, bacteria within animals was becoming more resistant to antibiotic treatment. This would subsequently lead to humans being put at risk of falling afoul of this antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
The FDA rejected their bid, saying that it would be too costly and take too much time. A lawsuit was then filed by a coalition of public interest groups led by the National Resources Defense Council in order to overturn that decision. Now, a judge has said that the agency was in error with their initial rejection. The judge said to deny the petition request on the grounds that the FDA described would be both “arbitrary and capricious.”
This is but the latest such decision that seems to go against the FDA’s initial findings. In March, they were ordered to begin the withdrawal of tetracyclines and penicillin in animal feed. To keep such materials in an animal’s system, drug makers must prove that the administration of those antibiotics is safe.
The Food and Drug Administration is doing what it can to prevent animals from becoming resistant to antibiotics that ought to help stave off infections.
For years now, various livestock producers have been using antibiotics to make animals such as cattle grow larger so as to improve food output, or else to improve feed efficiency. The problem with this practice is that those animals can begin to develop a resistance to the very antibiotics meant to make animals healthier and heartier. Therefore, when an animal actually does get sick, those same antibiotics are much less effective at curing the illness.
To combat this, the FDA today announced three documents that are going to be laying out new guidelines for livestock producers to follow in order to ensure the health of so-called food producing animals.
The first is meant to act as guidance in how producers can phase out the usage of such antibiotics. It calls for veterinarians to be brought in to supervise the application of antibiotics in instances where animals really are sick. The second document will advise drug companies on how they ought to remove from their labels statements touting their usage in food production, putting in its place information about veterinarian-assisted illness treatment. The third is a proposal for how vets can determine how to efficiently permit antibiotic usage among animals.
I’ll be paying attention to this story as a Los Angeles personal injury lawyer. This is a step that many activists have been trying to get the FDA to enact for some time, and no matter what happens, I just hope as a Fresno personal injury lawyer that it keeps humans and animals alike safe.
Because of worries that it could actually adversely affect human beings, the Food and Drug Administration has taken steps to ban cephalosporin in livestock.
The thinking works like this: although antibiotics such as cephalosporin are a great way to treat infections, extended application can actually cause the person being treated to become susceptible to strengthened bacteria. Cattle, chicken, and pigs have been given the drug to combat internal infection, but since those animals are then processed into our food, we then risk being constantly exposed to the cephalosporin.
Basically, this means it’s possible that fairly harmless bacteria are taken care of while the more serious bacteria like E. coli become immune to the effects of an antibiotic.
There are other antibiotics that are given to livestock that have not yet been banned, such as the far more common tetracycline. However, experts think that the cephalosporin ban is a great step that may lead to bans on more prevalent types of antibiotics.
One area where the ban on cephalosporin will not take place is with pets. The antibiotic is widespread in veterinary offices, and as such, the FDA does not want to compromise the safety of such animals.
As a personal injury lawyer in Long Beach, I’m glad to see any steps taken to preserve public health. It’s my hope that this and other measures can save lives and make food safer for all of us to eat. As a Los Angeles personal injury attorney, I’ll be paying attention to see what other practices the FDA enacts in the near future.
According to news sources, a ruling issued by the Food and Drug Administration today will effectively put an end to the practice of using common antibiotics in livestock, in an attempt to protect human beings from drug-resistant bacteria, which may have evolved as a direct result of the practice.
The ruling will prevent only drugs belonging to the class of antibiotics known as cephalosporins from being used in livestock. The measure places an emphasis on preventing the use of this class of antibiotics in certain types of livestock, such as cattle, swine, turkeys and poultry. The threat arises from the livestock carrying drug-resistant germs in their manure or flesh, which they can then transmit to humans, as a result of the antibiotic treatments they receive to treat certain disease.
The purpose of the ruling is to help decrease the number of people becoming ill due to spreading resistant superbugs, by prohibiting the extra-label use of this class of antibiotics.
As a Long Beach personal injury lawyer, I appreciate all efforts being made to ensure increased healthcare safety standards for patients. I hope this information can help raise awareness about this practice and keep consumers safe. If you or a loved one has been injured through the use or consumption of a defective product, speak with a personal injury attorney Long Beach to learn about the legal options available to you.