Veterinary Pharmaceuticals

Many veterinarians compound and apply their own pharmaceuticals to their patients. Safety guidelines in both the manufacture and use of these medications are less stringent than in humans, although the risk of injury to the people who come in contact with them is just as great. Substances in this group include antibiotics, immunizations, hormones, anesthetics, steroids, disinfectants, sterilants, prostaglandins, special feed formulas, and insecticides. A good example is the accidental injection of brucellosis vaccine into the hand of the veterinarian as he gives an injection to an animal. The veterinarian is faced with multiple exposures including infection, tetanus, toxic injection injury, and an immunological response. Aggressive treatment with antibiotics, steroids, and sometimes surgery is often delayed by the reluctance of veterinarians to admit their injuries and their tendency for self-treatment.

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