Self-Medication and its Determinants in Butajira , Southern Ethiopia

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Addis Ababa University


In developing countries including Ethiopia studies on drug utilization pattern at community level particularly on the issue of self-medication and drug hoarding are rare. study that was This community based cross-sectional supplimented by FGD (Focus Group Discussion) was carried out in Butajira, Southern Ethiopia, between September 1994- December 1994 to determine the extent and determinants of self-medication, the extent of drug hoarding at household level and to describe the community's criteria for therapy choice among modern drugs. The survey results showed that 1207 (6%) persons reported to have been ill in the past two weeks preceding the interview date; out of which 501 (42%) didn't take any drug or herbal medicine for their illness. Among 706 (58%) respondents who took drugs, 201 (28.5%) self medicated themselves and the majority 115 (57%) of selfmedications were carried out by using modern drugs. Determinants of self-medication with pharmaceuticals among adults were assessed using bivariate and mul ti variate analysis; being from meskan sub-ethnic group came out as a significant determinant { adjusted OR, 3.5 with 95 % CI (1.39, 8.83)}. Six hundred and eighty eight (14 %) of the studied households found storing drugs and 97% of these households were found storing traditional herbs. Colour, shape and dosage form are the criteria for therapy choice. In addition, injections are chosen as the most important remedy by most participants of the FGD. In conclusion, this study highlights medication is one of the maj or form of opt i ons in the studied community and it that selfhealth care is largely carried out with modern pharmaceuticals. Finally, the study recommended that health education on rational use of drugs using local native language and local meanings to pharmaceuticals is essential to avoid inappropriate use of drugs in self-medication. Studies to evaluate the effectiveness of drug information media¥ is also recommended.



Drug Utilization