Unbelievably, this news comes as a surprise to many vets, biologists and very experienced people working in the world of Spanish wildlife. Diclofenac is a powerful anti-inflammatory drug that has wiped out vulture populations in India, Pakistan and Nepal. Now, a repeat of this ecological disaster is threatening Europe. Despite the fact that safe alternative drugs are readily available, Diclofenac has been authorised for use on domestic animals in Italy, and in Spain where 80% of European vultures live, and is now becoming widely available on the EU market. According to experts in SEO/BirdLife (BirdLife in Spain), RSPB (BirdLife UK) and the Vulture Conservation Foundation, this may cause a European mass die off of endangered and ecologically valuable wildlife….
Over at the Iberianature forum there is a very large topic on this subject that amazingly we started back in 2008… It makes good reading and has a lot of background information.
Diclofenac is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug that has been used in humans for donkeys years. It is especially helpful to arthritic sufferers, especially children with juvenile arthritis. It does however come with various side-effects, some more serious than others. In humans, it is a case for doctors to work out in the individual patient whether the benefits out-weigh the risks.Meloxicam is a newer NSAID, which also comes with it’s own benefits and risks…infact all of the NSAID’s can have serious side effects in a few individuals.Both drugs have their uses and, if used appropriately, can be very beneficial.The question I feel we should be asking is why the vets in Africa and Asia are using NSAID’s and how frequently…they should not be dished out like sweets for mild pain, also if the animal is incapacitated enough to need NSAID’s and subsequently dies, the disposal of the corpse should be of paramount importance to prevent it becoming part of the food chain.Diclofenac comes as tablets, suppositories and injections. Trade names areVoltarol (distributed by Novartis), Diclomax (Provalis), Motifene( Sankyo), Arthrotec Pharmacia), Acoflam,Defenac,Dexomon,Dicloflex,diclovol, Fenactol,Flamatak,Flamrase,rhumalgan,Slofenac and other trade names in other countries.