An­tibi­otic re­sis­tance in pets

Myrtleford Times - - Regional Extra - Dr Mea­gan Lee, vet­eri­nar­ian

AN­TIBI­OTIC re­sis­tance is real and is pet­ri­fy­ing.

It is es­ti­mated by the World Health Or­gan­i­sa­tion that 700,000 peo­ple die an­nu­ally due to drug re­sis­tant bac­te­ria.

They also es­ti­mate that if no ac­tion is taken that num­ber could rise to 10 mil­lion by the year 2050.

An­tibi­otic re­sis­tance could mean that hip and knee re­place­ments, chemo­ther­apy and C-sec­tions would be­come too risky to per­form and a thing of the past.

There is in­creas­ing pres­sure on the ve­teri­nary com­mu­nity to be very care­ful with how we use an­tibi­otics.

There are some an­tibi­otics we are not al­lowed to use and po­ten­tially any new class of an­tibi­otics de­vel­oped in the fu­ture will be for hu­man use only.

Thus we need to be very care­ful with how we use our an­tibi­otics we have ac­cess too now.

There may even come a time, if we are not care­ful, that we have to prove there is an in­fec­tion by per­form­ing a cul­ture, be­fore we are al­lowed to ad­min­is­ter an­tibi­otics.

This will make treat­ing an­i­mals much more ex­pen­sive and time con­sum­ing.

Ev­ery­one needs to play a role in this.

Ev­ery­one needs to recog­nise this is a ma­jor, global, pub­lic health is­sue that is al­ready af­fect­ing lives.

We need to be smart about how we use an­tibi­otics and only use them when we have a high sus­pi­cion of in­fec­tion with a BAC­TE­RIA.

They are of no use for vi­ral in­fec­tions.

A lot of su­per­fi­cial wounds can be treated us­ing a lavage so­lu­tion and main­tain­ing hy­giene.

Many ill­nesses need time, rather than truck­loads of an­tibi­otics.

The same goes for peo­ple with a cold or flu who think that an­tibi­otics are the so­lu­tion, they are not and if we keep mis­us­ing them, the con­se­quences are dire!

In Vic­to­ria now we are see­ing an­tibi­otic re­sis­tance in our pets and live­stock.

There have been in­stances when an­i­mals have been ex­posed to mul­ti­ple an­tibi­otics, used for in­cor­rect pe­ri­ods and for in­cor­rect ill­nesses that are now dy­ing be­cause there are no an­tibi­otics left to treat them.

These same bac­te­ria killing these an­i­mals can also in­fect peo­ple.

So next time you think I’ll just give it a shot of this or that, re­ally con­sider what you are do­ing and how it might af­fect you and your fam­ily down the track.

This is a very se­ri­ous is­sue and it re­ally scares me to think what our fu­ture is go­ing to be like.

There are now guide­lines that vets need to fol­low in re­gards to how to use an­tibi­otics cor­rectly.

One study es­ti­mated that 30-50 per cent of an­tibi­otic use was in­ap­pro­pri­ate.

So if your vet isn’t hand­ing out an­tibi­otics by the truck load to any­one who asks for them, then there are some very good rea­sons for that, they are not try­ing to make life dif­fi­cult for you, they are do­ing their bit to hope­fully pre­serve their use in the fu­ture.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.