Perceptions, Knowledge and Practice of Self-Medication among Undergraduate Pharmacy Students in Malaysia: A Cross Sectional Study

Ramadan Mohamed Elkalmi, Mohamed Hassan Elnaem, Ibrahim Khalid Rayes, Ramez Mohamed Alkodmani, Tarek Mohamed Elsayed, Shazia Qasim Jamshed

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Abstract

Background: Awareness about health status has increased the prevalence of self-medication. Several factors play role in self-medication like gender, socioeconomic status, education level and frequency of illness.
Objective: To explore the perceptions, knowledge and practice of self-medication among pharmacy students from International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM), Kuantan.
Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted from October to December 2015. A convenience sample was taken from year 1 to year 4 of pharmacy students. Data was analyzed using SPSS version 21.
Results: Of 462 questionnaires distributed, 379 were returned giving a response rate of (88.3%). The results show significant difference on the level of knowledge among pharmacy students from different academic levels (p< 0.001). The total mean score of knowledge about self-medication was 4.57+1.89. For perception, the vast majority of the students believed that self-medication can save time (88.8%) and money (73.7%). Sore throat, headache, fever and cold were the most common inducements complaints for self-medication 68.4%; 64.9%, 64.6%, 60.9%; respectively. Furthermore, health supplements (29.8%), antipyretics (23.9%) and analgesics (23.4%) were the commonly used medication. Almost all (90.7%) of the students believed that self-medication can be practiced when the illness is not too serious.
Conclusion: The study findings depicted that the majority of study participants have insufficient knowledge about self-medication. Early exposure to knowledge about self-medicine in the early stages of undergraduate pharmacy education is imperative to ensure a proper and appropriate way to self-medication among students.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)132-136
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Pharmacy Practice and Community Medicine
Volume4
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 4 Sept 2018

Keywords

  • Self-medication
  • Pharmacy students
  • Perception
  • Knowledge level
  • Malaysia

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