Comparative assessment of self-medication practices among under-graduate Medical and Engineering students
Sai Divya, Savitri Katlam, Ipseeta Ray Mohanty, JD Jindal, YA Deshmukh
Journal Title:The Journal of Community Health Management
Background: The present study was designed to assess the reasons, indications and drug usage pattern for self-medication among medical students and their age matched non-medical (engineering) peer groups.
Methods: The cross sectional study was conducted at MGM Medical and Engineering Colleges, Kamothe, Navi Mumbai. The participants were medical and engineering students from first to final year with in the age group of 18- 25 years. The data was collected using a pre-tested semi structured questionnaire. The data was analyzed and results were expressed as percentages.
Results: Out of the total 226 medical and engineering students surveyed, 142 (62%) were females and 84 (37.16%) were males. Self-medication was reported among medical students (68%) as compared to engineering students (27%). The common ailments for which self-medication was used among medical students were fever (89%), common cold (84%), headache (83%) and among engineering students were common cold (73%), headache (71%), cough (65%). Medical students consulted their family (73%), medical books (49%), and old prescriptions (30%); while engineering students consulted the family (56%), pharmacists (33%) and friends (25%) for self-medication. The most common self medicated drugs were antipyretics (70%), analgesics (65%), antibiotics (57%) among medical students; and antibiotics (34%), cough suppressants (34%) and analgesics (20%) among engineering students. The reasons cited for self-medication among medical students were: mild illness (76%), know which drug to take (56%), urgency (43%); and mild illness (48%), time saving (29%), general well-being (25%), among engineering students.
Conclusions: This descriptive study found that the prevalence of self-medication among medical students was higher as compared to engineering students, facilitated by the easy availability of drugs and information from textbooks/family