Pharmaceutical products for humans or animals, as well as their related metabolites (degradation products) end up in the aquatic environment after use. Recent investigations from abroad show that low concentrations of pharmaceuticals are detectable in municipal waste water, surface water, groundwater and even drinking water. Little is known about the effects, and with that the risk, of long term exposure to low concentrations of pharmaceuticals for aquatic organisms. On the basis of the current knowledge, further attention to map the presence and effects of pharmaceutical residues on aquatic organisms is justified. To map the Dutch situation, recently a monitoring program has started.

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