North Rhine-Westphalia: low rates of antibiotics in bathing lakes

Online Medical Journal, 10.06.2019

North Rhine-Westphalia

BONN. Researchers from the Bonn University Hospital tested the bathing waters in North Rhine-Westphalia and made it clear that they found only very small amounts of water. antibiotics and resistant germs in 16 lakes (Expo Health 2019, online June 1).

During the bathing season of 2018, scientists from the University of Bonn made four visits to the waters, including the Baldeneysee, the Fühlinger See and the Zülpicher See, at the National Office of Nature , environment and consumer protection of North Rhine-Westphalia (LANUV).

The result: ten bathing lakes were completely unloaded. Low levels of antibiotic residues were measured in three bathing waters. Exposure to antibiotics and resistance genes (Baldeneysee and Seebad Haltern) is present in only two bathing waters.

According to the University Hospital, four samples had isolated and minor antibiotic contaminants (Elfrather Lake, Freilinger See, Great Weser Arch and Naturheilbad Heil).

Researchers believe that these low levels of exposure to antibiotics and resistance genes pose no risk to the health of healthy people, says the University of the Universe report. "However, patients whose immune system is impaired usually have to avoid natural bathing waters," emphasizes Professor Martin Exner, one of the authors, in the communication.

People with risk factors, such as chronic wounds, open skin diseases, ongoing antibiotic therapy or urine catheters, advise the doctor to bathe in polluted water.

"The results of the study are not directly applicable to other bathing waters", the first author, Dr. Manuel Döhla quotes. However, water surveys conducted in Lower Saxony, Bavaria and Rhineland-Palatinate showed levels of antibiotics and similar resistance genes.

Scientists at the Institute of Hygiene and Public Health at the University Hospital Bonn are looking to expand their bathing water research into antibiotics and resistance. Döhla: "We need more data to better categorize the risks for bathers." (Eb)

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