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CHANGE TO ADVICE ON USE OF FLUKICIDES IN
The European Commission has recently published a decision that will
lead to changes across the EU to the labelling of medicines containing
certain Flukicides. The advice confirms that products containing clorsulon, closantel, nitroxinil, triclabendazole
authorised for use in animals producing milk for human consumption,
including during the dry period. The advice goes on to provide specific
directions for products containing these ingredients as the only active
substance. This is detailed in the table below, but remember most
products containing any of the ingredients in bold above are affected by
Labels on the relevant products will eventually be changed but in the
meantime we are being advised to follow the advice in the table below.
The VMD (Veterinary Medicines Directorate) is encouraging
pharmaceutical companies that manufacture flukicides to perform the
necessary milk residue tests to obtain a licensed milk withdrawal period,
which may allow their use again during the dry period – however this
process will take a significant period of time. Fasinex 240 24%
has been granted a variation by the VMD meaning it
will still be available for use during the dry period in dairy cows subject
to a 50 day milk withhold (not within 48 days of calving + 48 hours).
pregnancy Do not use during last trimester of
pregnancy Do not use during last trimester of
except Fasinex 240 24%
Triclabendazole Pour-on (Cydectin produce milk for human
So what do we do now?!?!
This ruling means we can no longer advise you to use products such as
Trodax and Fasinex 10% at dry off in milking cows, or in heifers within 3
months of calving. Many farmers may choose to in future to dose with
Fasinex 240 24%, as this is effective versus immature fluke. All other
available licensed flukicides in the UK are only effective versus adult
fluke and are therefore less effective in controlling the problem at certain
times of the year, especially in the case of acute fluke problems in the late
summer autumn period. At this time of year fluke in the cows’ livers will
be at the immature stage and not affected by this treatment. However,
treatment with an adult flukicide at the right time of year, and in some
cases with repeated treatments is better than no treatment at all. Albendazole
is contained in Albex
and this is active versus
adult stages of liver fluke. These products carry a 60hour milk withhold
meaning they can be used throughout the dry period and in milking cows
provided the withdrawal period is attached.
The other potential option available is a product licensed in the EU but
not in the UK called Douvistome
. Douvistome carries a nil milk
withhold and can be legally imported under special licence into the UK
for use in dairy cows throughout lactation. This means that herds with
fluke problems can use repeated treatments throughout lactation and the
dry period to help control liver fluke. Although this is not as good as
using a product active against immature fluke, it will go someway to
control the problem as repeated treatments can be used throughout the
year. In order to obtain the special licence your vet must be able to prove
there is no suitable alternative product for use on the farm. We are
currently able to order Douvistome into the practice and eventually it will
be available through our usual wholesaler (still on special import licence).
It is, however, worth noting that the active ingredient in Douvistome is Oxyclozanide.
Oxyclozanide used to be available in the UK in a product
called Zanil and carried a 3 day milk withhold. Zanil is still available in
Ireland and also carries a 3 day milk withhold. This therefore leads to the
question of is it right to use a product with nil milk withhold, just because
it has that in the EU and can be imported on licence, where UK standards
previously applied a 3 day withhold (still upheld in Ireland) to the same
drug! We must assume the withhold was applied for a reason and
perhaps the UK should be concerned that it’s use may affect the quality
of milk supplied to the consumer!
Please discuss how this decision affects Fluke control on your unit further
with one of our vets.
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