Drugs in the drinking water.

Author:Scheer, Roddy
Position:THIS WEEK - Brief article

A recent investigation by reporters from the Associated Press (AP) found that a wide variety of pharmaceuticals--including antibiotics, anti-convulsants, mood stabilizers, sex hormones and over-the-counter painkillers--are present in the drinking water supplies of at least 41 million Americans across 24 major metropolitan areas from coast to coast. While the amounts of pharmaceuticals in any given sample may be tiny, scientists are worried that regular and cumulative exposure to even small amounts of mixed drugs could have subtle or more serious health effects on a large number of people over time.


Most of the pharmaceuticals in the water supply end up there when medication is not fully absorbed by the people taking it, and ends up passing through and getting flushed down the toilet. While such wastewater is treated for contaminants before it is discharged into...

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