Prevalence and Nature of Self-Medication of Drugs Among Pregnant Women in Rajshahi City, Bangladesh

Md. Uzzal Haque
2016 European Journal of Preventive Medicine  
The phenomenon of self-medication is a significant problem in a developing country due to easy availability of drugs. It is important in pregnancy as these agents may be teratogenic; pregnant women may be exposed to drugs that have serious harmful effects on their fetus. The present study was conducted to determine the prevalence and nature of selfmedication in pregnant women in Rajshahi city, Bangladesh. The study was carried out using a self-designed standard structured questionnaire
more » ... WHO guidelines from January 2015 to April 2015. In this study, 650 pregnant women were considered as randomly selected sample from women attending for maternity care from one public hospital and five private clinics in Rajshahi City. 79 (12.2%) women use self-medication. The conditions which prompted women to obtain selfmedication of drugs were gastric acidity (32.9%), infection (24.1%), cold & fever (21.5%), pain (12.7%), vomiting (8.9%) and disorders related to pregnancy (7.6%). The drugs most commonly used were antacids (27.8%) followed by non-steroidal antiinflammatory drugs (26.6%), iron (15.2%), vitamins and minerals (12.7%), ayurvedic preparations (5.1%), antiemetic (5.1%) and antibiotics (3.8%) respectively. Most common reasons of self-medication were availability of drugs (42%), prior experience (20.8%), emergency usage (11.2%), knowledge about drugs (10.0%) and advice from traditional healers (8.0%). Moreover, 44.3% of women did not complete the course of antibiotics. Due to the adverse effects of self-medication, particularly during pregnancy, which can lead to teratogenicity or fetotoxicity, it is necessary to take some measures to preventing self-medication in pregnant women.
doi:10.11648/j.ejpm.20160406.11 fatcat:fqekjxa6ebb6hmcoi4jzndkyou