About 4,000 active pharmaceutical ingredients are being administered worldwide in prescription medicines, over-the-counter therapeutic drugs, and veterinary drugs.
Their active ingredients comprise a variety of synthetic chemicals produced by pharmaceutical companies in both the industrialized and the developing world at a rate of 100,000 tons per year.
While pharmaceuticals are stringently regulated for efficacy and patient safety, the adverse side effects they may have in the natural environment have not yet been sufficiently studied and are not covered by an international agreement or arrangement.
- Emission pathways of pharmaceuticals entering the environment
- Monitoring pharmaceutical residues in the environment
- Global occurrence in the environment
- Effects in the environment
- Current knowledge of pharmaceuticals in drinking water
- Potential cooperative action