DOI: 10.3390/su151612639 ISSN:

Sources of Antibiotic Contamination in Wastewater and Approaches to Their Removal—An Overview

Antony V. Samrot, Samraj Wilson, Ram Singh Sanjay Preeth, Pandurangan Prakash, Mahendran Sathiyasree, Subramanian Saigeetha, Nagarajan Shobana, Senthilkumar Pachiyappan, Vinod Vincent Rajesh
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Building and Construction

In the practice of medicine, antibiotics are extremely important and are employed in the treatment of infections. A lot of antibiotics are consumed by humans and excreted via urine and feces into sewage systems and treatment plants. These are considered to be non-biodegradable, and over the years they accumulate in the aquatic environment. The presence of antibiotics in water resources causes the emergence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, posing a serious threat to the health of human beings. Water bodies must be adequately treated before being discharged to prevent the spread of antibiotic resistance. In the present article, the sources of antibiotics and strategies used for their effective removal, such as ultrafiltration, microfiltration, nanofiltration, membranous biological reactor treatment, Advanced Oxidation Process (AOP), Reverse Osmosis (RO) and Nano sorbents, are discussed. Conventional wastewater treatment plants are not able to eliminate antibiotics deposition/resistance genes effectively and efficiently. In this regard, the adsorption method is the most effective way of removing antibiotics from wastewater from various sources.

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