Ask Mar­i­lyn

Albuquerque Journal - Parade - - Picks - By Mar­i­lyn vos Sa­vant —John Nel­son, Lake­wood, Colo.

Why can my cat get an an­tibi­otic in­jec­tion that lasts two weeks while we hu­mans have to take pills sev­eral times ev­ery day? Any­one who has tried to give a cat a pill un­der­stands the ap­peal! (The in­jec­tions are avail­able for dogs too.) But the draw­backs are too sig­nif­i­cant for hu­mans. First, all drugs have side ef­fects. If a pa­tient re­acts badly to a long-act­ing drug, he or she is stuck with it. By con­trast, a short-act­ing drug clears the sys­tem quickly. Sec­ond, a drug that lasts, say, two weeks at full strength doesn't sim­ply dis­ap­pear at that time. In­stead, low lev­els stay in the sys­tem for a cou­ple of months. This may foster an­tibi­otic re­sis­tance.

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