Medical And Social Benefits Of Livestock Production
Most of us are not aware that the farmer provides us with more than just a healthy, inexpensive diet. Animals raised for food are also invaluable in human medical treatments and in our every-day lives by providing us with materials which enrich our lives and make them safer. Listed below are just a few medical and social benefits provided to us by livestock production:
Medical Contributions of Cattle
Epinephrine is used to relieve some symptoms of hay fever, asthma and some allergies. It is also used as a heart stimulant in some crisis situations, and by dentists to prolong the effect of local anesthetics.
Thrombin from cattle blood helps blood clotting, and is valuable in treating wounds to inaccessible parts of the body. It is also used in skin grafting.
Liver extract is sometimes combined with folic acid and injected to treat various types of anemia.
Perhaps the best known contribution, insulin derived from cattle pancreas is used to treat diabetes. Glucagon helps counteract insulin-shock.
Others medical products include rennet, epinephrine, thrombin, heparin, TSH, ACTH, cholesterol, estrogen, and thyroid extract.
Product Contributions Using Cattle By-Products:
Musical Instrument Components, such as strings
See PDF (673 KB)
Medical Contributions of Swine
Valves from young to full-grown hogs are used in valve replacement surgery in humans, from infancy to old age. They are in some cases superior to mechanical valves because they don't stick and do not need the same level of anti-coagulant infusion. In the last 12 years, more than 250,000 lives have been saved through implantation of swine heart valves.
Due to its similarity to human skin, pigskin is used to treat massive burns and large accidental skin removal. Gelatin is used for capsules and pills.
Extracts are used to regulate the rate of metabolism in humans. Another extract is used to treat low calcium and phosphate levels and regulate heartbeat.
Extracts are the source of insulin; even with synthetic insulin, there are an estimated 5% of all diabetics allergic to all but insulin from hogs.
Medical products from hog production include cortisone, Norepinephrine, plasmin, blood fibrin, heart valves, estrogen, relaxin, insulin, burn dressings, pepsin and oxytocin.
Product Contributions Using Swine By-products:
* The above medical/social information was provided by Women Involved in Farm Economics and the California Farm Bureau Federation.
See PDF (673 KB)