A new study published in the Postgraduate Medical Journal warns that a large number of common medicines contain animal products and vegetarians are unknowingly prescribed the medicines.
Researchers from Manchester Royal Infirmary and South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust found that a number of common medicines contained gelatin which is extracted from animal bones or skin.
The researchers conducted a survey of 500 people of mixed-ethnic population in Manchester who had urological symptoms. Around 283 participants were taking medicines of whim 200 people said that they were not supposed to eat animal products.
The researchers concluded that better labeling practices should be followed in order to inform the public regarding animal product content in medications. "Substitution of gelatin with vegetable-based alternatives and clearer labeling on drug packaging are alternative strategies to help minimize the risks of inadvertently contravening a patient's dietetic beliefs when prescribing oral medication", they said.