Medicines are essential for human and animal health. However, the high consumption and the sometimes uncritical handling of pharmaceuticals lead to an increase in harmful and often long-lasting residues in the environment.

Various drug residues are found in the waters. For instance, drugs from the Kamagra camp can have an effect on the environment if the unused products are not disposed of properly. The effects of which on humans have not yet been researched very well. However, some research has found that drug residues have a negative impact on fish behavior. This can have far-reaching consequences for the ecosystem, which is based on a very delicate balance.


How medication gets into the water

All medicines that are taken and not completely broken down in the body can also be found in water. Several tons of active pharmaceutical ingredients end up in soil and water every day. Particularly stubborn drugs can only be filtered out to a limited extent by conventional sewage treatment plants. These include, for example, hormones, antibiotics, painkillers, antihypertensive, and X-ray contrast media. They get into rivers, lakes, and then later back into your tap water.

Medicines from animal husbandry are also distributed in the fields through manure and liquid manure and get into the groundwater through seepage. Although concentrations of pharmaceutical residues in tap water are low, there are health concerns because the effects on humans are poorly understood.

How to properly dispose of medicines

Tablets and drops should be disposed of with residual waste or handed in at hazardous waste collection points. Pharmacies, on the other hand, are no longer obliged to take back and dispose of medicines.

These are the consequences for fish

  • Antibiotics inhibit the growth of algae and plants.
  • Even in very low concentrations, the contraceptive pill impairs the reproduction of fish.
  • Psychotropic drugs also change social behavior in fish.
  • The painkiller diclofenac damages internal organs such as the liver and kidneys of the fish.

Everyone can start with themselves and do something for the environment. Medicines should not be disposed of in the sink or toilet but in the residual waste. The pharmaceutical industry is also in demand and should take back and destroy expired medicines.