Objective: This study was undertaken to determine the knowledge, attitude and practice of self-medication among first-year medical students of the Arabian Gulf University, Bahrain. Subjects and Methods: This was an anonymous, questionnaire-based, descriptive study. A prevalidated questionnaire, containing open-ended and close-ended questions, was administered to the subjects. Data were analyzed using SPSS version 12 and the results expressed as counts and percentages. Results: Out of the 134 respondents, 43 (32.1%) were males and 91 (67.9%) were females; their mean age in years ± SD was 18.01 ± 0.78. The respondents’ knowledge about appropriate self-medication was poor, but knowledge of the benefits and risks of self-medication was adequate. The respondents found self-medication to be time-saving, economical, convenient and providing quick relief in common illnesses. Important disadvantages of self-medication mentioned were the risk of making a wrong diagnosis, inappropriate drug use and adverse effects. The majority (76.9%) of the respondents had a positive attitude favoring self-medication. Self-medication was practiced by 44.8% of the subjects. The most common indications for self-medication were to relieve the symptoms of headache (70.9%), cough, cold and sore throat (53.7%), stomachache (32.8%) and fever (29.9%). Analgesics (81.3%) were the most common drugs used for self-medication. The practice of self-medication was appropriate in only 14.2% of cases. Conclusion: Knowledge about appropriate self-medication was poor, attitude towards self-medication was positive, and the practice of self-medication was common and often inappropriate.
© 2006 S. Karger AG, Basel
- Medical students
- Health policy
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Dr. Henry James
Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics
College of Medicine and Medical Sciences
Arabian Gulf University, PO Box 22979, Manama (Kingdom of Bahrain)
Tel. +973 1723 9841, Fax +973 1727 1090, E-Mail DrHenryJames@hotmail.com
Received: July 26, 2005
Accepted: November 20, 2005
Number of Print Pages : 6
Number of Figures : 1, Number of Tables : 3, Number of References : 18
Medical Principles and Practice (International Journal of the Kuwait University Health Sciences Centre)
Vol. 15, No. 4, Year 2006 (Cover Date: June 2006)
Journal Editor: Al-Zaid, N.S. (Kuwait)
ISSN: 1011–7571 (print), 1423–0151 (Online)
For additional information: http://www.karger.com/MPP
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