A new study found evidence that Americans are buying fish antibiotics online – and taking them. Presumably, the reason behind this decision is that antibiotics are cheaper than going to the doctor.
Researchers at the University of South Carolina examined online reviews of 24 sites selling nine types of fish antibiotics. Of the nearly 2,300 reviews analyzed, 55 (2.4%) seemed to indicate that customers were buying the product for human use. Although these ratings were few and far between, they received more attention and positive tastes from other users than common criticism.
In addition, the team also found at least one reseller that assured customers, according to the Gizmodo, that antibiotics were good for use in people, in answer to a question.
The preliminary research, which has not yet been peer reviewed, was presented last Wednesday at the clinical meeting of the American Society of Health System Pharmacists (ASHP).
"Although human consumption of fish antibiotics is probably low, any human consumption of animal antibiotics is alarming," he said in a statement. announcement, author of the study Brandon Bookstaver of the University of South Carolina School of Pharmacy.
Although it is not known why these people turned to fish medicines, Bookstaver and his team noted that antibiotics are much less regulated than those sold to people, cattle and pets, such as cats and dogs.
In terms of cost, they are probably cheaper than what you would pay for the uninsured human version. In the study, for example, they found a bottle of 30 capsules of 500 milligrams of amoxicillin for $ 8.99 (equivalent to 8.09 euros), while the same amount could reach $ 32 (equivalent to 28 euros). The comparison does not take into account the additional expenses and time spent on a doctor's appointment while fish antibiotics are bought over the counter.
These medicines may not be functionally different in ingredients from a doctor's version, but as they are not regulated, there is no way to tell if people are really getting what the labels promise.
Still, people are putting me at risk. Doctors already tend to override antibiotics when they are not needed, which increases the risk of bacteria becoming resistant. In addition, antibiotics have side effects.
Some doctors have found patients using fish antibiotics that had dire consequences. To the British newspaper The guardianFarzon Nahvi, a doctor from the New York emergency department, said one of her patients who took fish antibiotics because she had no health insurance, “had an overdose, ended up in intensive care and ended up much sicker and with an even bill. bigger. In addition, you missed a job interview, which could have been your ticket to health insurance. ”