Artículo: Antibiotic removal processes from water & wastewater for the protection of the aquatic environment – a review
Currently the serious problem of contamination by antibiotics is a reality. The scientific evidence of its negative effects on the aquatic environment and human health are numerous and unquestionable. Therefore, it is essential to intensify research into effective and efficient processes for removing antibiotics from the aquatic environment. In this paper, on the one hand, a review of the concentrations detected in all types of waters of some antibiotics is developed. In concrete of Ciprofloxacin (CIP), Erythromycin (ERY), Levofloxacin (LEV), Metronidazole (MET), Norfloxacin (NOR), Ofloxacin (OFL), Sulfamethoxazole (SMX) and Trimethoprim (TIM). Of the publications consulted, it can be noted that the most detected is SMX, while those with the highest concentrations are CIP, SMX and TIM. On the other hand, some of the main methods to eliminate antibiotics from the aquatic environment are defined and classified. The methods are compared, indicating their advantages and disadvantages. Combined processes are also mentioned as a good alternative. Finally, the removal percentages achieved by each method in some representative publications are detailed. In this regard, it can be said that the methods with the best elimination percentages (range 80–100%) are biological methods (Biological Aerated Filter, Anaerobic Digestion & Biological Activated Carbon Filter) and membrane technology (Nanofiltration & Reverse Osmosis). While those with the worst results (under 80%) are chemicals (Coagulation-Flocculation) and constructed wetlands (Horizontal Subsurface Flow Constructed Wetlands).