Patient Attitudes and Patterns of Self-Medication with Antibiotics – A Cross-Sectional Study in Bulgaria
Macedonian Journal of Medical Sciences
BACKGROUND: Self-medication with antibiotics is a major concern worldwide because of the high risks of antimicrobial resistance which may result in complicated courses of treatment, increased risk of death and excess costs to the healthcare systems. AIM: The aim was to study the attitudes and self-medication patterns as related to the use of antibiotics among the general Bulgarian population and their determinants. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A questionnaire-based survey was performed among the
... rmed among the patients in two randomly selected municipalities. The questionnaire was mailed to 50 randomly selected adult patients by each of the 33 responding GPs thus addressing a total of 1650 participants. RESULTS: A total of 1050 patients completed and returned the questionnaire. The observed selfmedication rate was 43%. The women and the younger employees and students tended to have a higher self-medication rate. Fever (22%), sore throat and cough (12.7%) and discomfort when urinating (8.2%) were the most frequent patterns related to the practice of self-medication. CONCLUSION: This analysis reported an extensive use of self-medication with antibiotics in the study population before the changes in the Bulgarian legislation. Younger age and social status (students, employed) were the most important socio-demographic patterns that had probably led towards self-medication with antibiotics.