Self-medication among Undergraduate Medical Students of Alexandria Faculty of Medicine: Where do We Stand?
Background: The aim of the present study was to assess the prevalence of self-medication among undergraduate medical students in Alexandria Faculty of Medicine and recognize the patterns and the attitude of students towards intake.
Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted among undergraduate medical students attending Alexandria Faculty of Medicine from both national and international programs during the period of June 2013 until October 2013. A self-administrated, semi-constructed questionnaire was used to assess the practice of self-medication among 408 students who were randomly selected using a stratified random sample technique.
Results: Self-medication was reported by 208 (52.7%) students, with no significant difference between males and females. The highest percentage of self-medication was reported among those who have completed six years of academic study and the lowest was reported among those who have completed two years of academic study. There was a statistically significant association between educational stage (preclinical and clinical) practice of self-medication. Most common medications involved were analgesic and anti-inflammatory followed by decongestants, antimicrobials and antihistaminic drugs. 309 (78.8%) students believed that self-medication is acceptable.
Conclusion: The present study demonstrated that self-medication is practiced by more than half of undergraduate medical students in the Faculty of Medicine - Alexandria University. Acquiring medical knowledge seems to be associated with the practice of self-medication. Therefore, more attention should be paid to medical curricula to raise awareness and limit the hazardous effects of this phenomenon
World Health Organization. Guidelines for the regulatory assessment of medicinal products for use in self-medication. 2000.
Asubonteng Rivers P, Bae S. Substance abuse and dependence in physicians: detection and treatment. Health Manpow Manage. 1998;24(5):183-187.
Leape LL, Fromson JA. Problem doctors: is there a system-level solution? Ann Intern Med. 2006;144(2):107-115.
Bohigian GM, Croughan JL, Sanders K. Substance abuse and dependence in physicians: an overview of the effects of alcohol and drug abuse. Mo Med. 1994 May;91(5):233-239.
James H, Handu SS, Al Khaja KA, Otoom S, Sequeira RP. Evaluation of the knowledge, attitude and practice of self-medication among first-year medical students. Med Princ Pract. 2006;15(4):270-275.
Kiyingi K, Lauwo J. Drugs in the home: danger and waste. 1993.
Hughes CM, McElnay JC, Fleming GF. Benefits and risks of self medication. Drug Safety. 2001;24(14):1027-1037.
Hem E, Stokke G, Tyssen R, Grønvold NT, Vaglum P, Ekeberg Ø. Self-prescribing among young Norwegian doctors: a nine-year follow-up study of a nationwide sample. BMC Medicine. 2005;3(1):16.
Bretagne JF, Richard-Molard B, Honnorat C, Caekaert A, Barthelemy P. Gastroesophageal reflux in the French general population: national survey of 8000 adults. Presse Med. 2006 Jan;35(1 Pt 1):23-31.
Shankar P, Partha P, Shenoy N. Self-medication and non-doctor prescription practices in Pokhara valley, Western Nepal: a questionnaire-based study. BMC Fam Pract. 2002;3(1):17.
Abahussain E, Matowe LK, Nicholls PJ. Self-reported medication use among adolescents in Kuwait. Med Princ Pract. 2005 May-Jun;14(3):161-164.
Zafar SN, Syed R, Waqar S, Irani FA, Saleem S. Prescription of medicines by medical students of Karachi, Pakistan: a cross-sectional study. BMC Public Health. 2008;8(1):162.
Alhomoud F, Aljamea Z, Almahasnah R, Alkhalifah K, Basalelah L, Alhomoud FK. Self-medication and self-prescription with antibiotics in the Middle East-do they really happen? A systematic review of the prevalence, possible reasons, and outcomes. Int J Infect Dis. 2017 Apr;57:3-12.
Byarugaba DK. A view on antimicrobial resistance in developing countries and responsible risk factors. Int J Antimicrob Agents. 2004 Aug;24(2):105-110.
Hart CA, Kariuki S. Antimicrobial resistance in developing countries. BMJ. 1998 Sep 5;317(7159):647-650.
Grigoryan L, Burgerhof JG, Degener JE, Deschepper R, Lundborg CS, Monnet DL, et al. Determinants of self-medication with antibiotics in Europe: the impact of beliefs, country wealth and the healthcare system. J Antimicrob Chemother. 2008;61(5):1172-1179.
Chew‐Graham CA, Rogers A, Yassin N. ‘I wouldn't want it on my CV or their records': medical students' experiences of help‐seeking for mental health problems. Med Educ. 2003;37(10):873-880.
Roberts LW, Warner TD, Lyketsos C, Frank E, Ganzini L, Carter D. Perceptions of academic vulnerability associated with personal illness: a study of 1,027 students at nine medical schools. Collaborative Research Group on Medical Student Health. Compr Psychiatry. 2001 Jan-Feb;42(1):1-15.
James H, Handu SS, Khaja KA, Sequeira RP. Influence of medical training on self-medication by students. Int J Clin Pharmacol Ther. 2008 Jan;46(1):23-29.
Zafar SN, Syed R, Waqar S, Zubairi AJ, Vaqar T, Shaikh M, et al. Self-medication amongst university students of Karachi: prevalence, knowledge and attitudes. J Pak Med Assoc. 2008 Apr;58(4):214-7.
El Ezz N, Ez-Elarab H. Knowledge, attitude and practice of medical students towards self medication at Ain Shams University, Egypt. J Prev Med Hyg. 2011 Dec;52(4):196-200.
Helal R, Abou-ElWafa H. Self-Medication in University Students from the City of Mansoura, Egypt. J Environ Public Health. 2017;2017:9145193.
Banerjee I, Bhadury T. Self-medication practice among undergraduate medical students in a tertiary care medical college, West Bengal. J Postgrad Med. 2012;58(2):127.
Klemenc-Ketiš Z, Hladnik Ž, Kersnik J. A cross sectional study of sex differences in self-medication practices among university students in Slovenia. Coll Antropol. 2011;35(2):329-334.
Bennadi D. Self-medication: A current challenge. J Basic Clin Pharm. 2013 Dec;5(1):19-23.
Pandya RN, Jhaveri KS, Vyas FI, Patel VJ. Prevalence, pattern and perceptions of self-medication in medical students. Int J Basic Clin Pharmacol. 2013 Jun;2(3):275-280.
Copyright (c) 2018 Marwa Ramadan, Asmaa Eltaweel, Tamwe El Nakhal, Hanan Hemead, Abdelrahman Maraqa, Doha Abish, Rana Essam, Azza Baraka
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
- The Author retains copyright in the Work, where the term “Work” shall include all digital objects that may result in subsequent electronic publication or distribution.
- Upon acceptance of the Work, the author shall grant to the Publisher the right of first publication of the Work.
- The Author shall grant to the Publisher and its agents the nonexclusive perpetual right and license to publish, archive, and make accessible the Work in whole or in part in all forms of media now or hereafter known under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License or its equivalent, which, for the avoidance of doubt, allows others to copy, distribute, and transmit the Work under the following conditions:
- Attribution—other users must attribute the Work in the manner specified by the author as indicated on the journal Web site; with the understanding that the above condition can be waived with permission from the Author and that where the Work or any of its elements is in the public domain under applicable law, that status is in no way affected by the license.
- The Author is able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the nonexclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the Work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), as long as there is provided in the document an acknowledgment of its initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are permitted and encouraged to post online a prepublication manuscript (but not the Publisher’s final formatted PDF version of the Work) in institutional repositories or on their Websites prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work. Any such posting made before acceptance and publication of the Work shall be updated upon publication to include a reference to the Publisher-assigned DOI (Digital Object Identifier) and a link to the online abstract for the final published Work in the Journal.
- Upon Publisher’s request, the Author agrees to furnish promptly to Publisher, at the Author’s own expense, written evidence of the permissions, licenses, and consents for use of third-party material included within the Work, except as determined by Publisher to be covered by the principles of Fair Use.
- The Author represents and warrants that:
- the Work is the Author’s original work;
- the Author has not transferred, and will not transfer, exclusive rights in the Work to any third party;
- the Work is not pending review or under consideration by another publisher;
- the Work has not previously been published;
- the Work contains no misrepresentation or infringement of the Work or property of other authors or third parties; and
- the Work contains no libel, invasion of privacy, or other unlawful matter.
- The Author agrees to indemnify and hold Publisher harmless from the Author’s breach of the representations and warranties contained in Paragraph 6 above, as well as any claim or proceeding relating to Publisher’s use and publication of any content contained in the Work, including third-party content.
Enforcement of copyright
The IJMS takes the protection of copyright very seriously.
If the IJMS discovers that you have used its copyright materials in contravention of the license above, the IJMS may bring legal proceedings against you seeking reparation and an injunction to stop you using those materials. You could also be ordered to pay legal costs.
If you become aware of any use of the IJMS' copyright materials that contravenes or may contravene the license above, please report this by email to firstname.lastname@example.org
If you become aware of any material on the website that you believe infringes your or any other person's copyright, please report this by email to email@example.com