Chloramphenicol and Livestock

bogleb aguldo at
Sat Jun 24 13:21:30 EST 1995

23 June 1991
        "[Chloramphenicol] is not licensed for food animals in the United
States because of concern that drug residues in meat might also cause
aplastic anemia in the consumer.  However, chloramphenicol has been used
illegally by livestock producers and residues of the drug were detected in
food products in 1985.  The increase in chloramphenicol resistance in
_S. typhimurium_ suggests that the use of this drug in animals may be
leading to increased resistance in human _Salmonella_ infections."
                -- Cohen, Mitchell and Robert V. Tauxe.  Drug-resistant
                   _Salmonella_ in the United States:  an epidemiologic
                   perspective.  Science 234:964-9.  21 November 1986.
        "Chloramphenicol is ussed in the treatment of respiratory infections
in veal calves. . . .Foods of animal origin should be free from residues
of chloramphenicol.  A three-week interval between administration of
chloramphenicol to veal calves and slaughter would appear to be reasonable
. . . ."
                -- Jorna, I.P. and H.J. Postema.  Chlooramfenicol in de
                   vleeskalverhouderij [Chloramphenicol at a veal-calf stock
                   farm].  [Dutch] Tijdschrift voor Diergeneeskunde 111(10):
                   471-5.  May 1986.
        "In the USA, the use of chloramphenicol has never been permitted in
food-producing animals.  Despite this, monitoring of tissues for residues
. . . .has frequently yielded positive results. . . .At the 32nd Meeting of
the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives, the toxicology and
residues of chloramphenicol were reviewed.  It was concluded that it was not
possible to have an assurance that chloramphenicol residues in foods of
animal origin would be safe for sensitive subjects.  Therefore, an acceptable
residue level could not be established."
                -- Page, S.W.  Chloramphenicol 1. Hazards of use and the
                   current regulatory environment.  Australian Veterinary
                   Journal 68(1):1-2.  1 January 1991.
        To what degree is the agricultural use of chloramphenicol believed
to occur at the present time?  Is agricultural use common in 3rd world?  I
am aware that it is cheap OTC, and of the possible ethnic variability in
susceptibility to aplastic anemia; also that estimates of incidence of
chloramphenicol-related aplastic anemia (CRAA) range from 1 in 24,500 to
1 in 40,800 to 1 in 6,000 to 1 in 19,000, and that by comparison risk of
fatal anaphylaxis in patients administered penicillin is 1 in 50,000.
        Thanks in advance.
Bob R. Bogle, MT(ASCP),CLS(NCA)		Voice:   (520) 694-6107
Dept. Clinical Pathology		E-mail:  aguldo at
HLA/Immunology Laboratories		The views expressed herein are my own
University Medical Center		and should in no way be construed to
1501 N. Campbell Avenue			represent those of U.M.C.
Tucson, AZ  85724					-- THE MANAGEMENT

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