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Last Updated: Sunday, 8 August, 2004, 04:17 GMT 05:17 UK Prozac 'found in drinking water'
Traces of the
antidepressant Prozac can
be found in the nation's
drinking water, it has been
Middle East
South Asia
A report in Sunday's Observer says the government's Technology
environment watchdog has discussed the impact for human Entertainment
Also in the news
----------------- A spokesman for the Drinking Water Inspectorate (DWI) said content of external internet sites the Prozac found was most likely highly diluted. TOP HEALTH STORIES
The newspaper says environmentalists are calling for an RELATED BBC SITES
SPORT It quotes the Liberal Democrats' environment spokesman, WEATHER Norman Baker MP, as saying the picture emerging looked like "a case of hidden mass medication upon the unsuspecting He says: "It is alarming that there is no monitoring of levels of Prozac and other pharmacy residues in our drinking water." Experts say the anti-depression drug gets into the rivers and water system via treated sewage water. Prescriptions increase
The DWI said the Prozac (known technically as fluoxetine) was unlikely to pose a health risk as it was so "watered down". The Observer says the revelations raise new fears over how many prescriptions for the drug are given out by doctors. In the decade leading up to 2001, the number of prescriptions for antidepressants went up from nine million per year to 24 million per year, says the paper. The Environment Agency report concluded that the Prozac in the water table could be potentially toxic and said the drug was a "potential concern". The exact amount of Prozac in the nation's drinking water is not known. BBC NEWS | Health | Prozac 'found in drinking water'
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