Aim To assess knowledge, attitude and practice (KAP) of antimicrobial self-medication among a convenience sample of population in Alexandria, Egypt.
Methodology A descriptive cross-sectional study using a self-administrated semi-constructed questionnaire. A convenience sample of 359 participants was studied using appropriate consent. The questionnaire had four sections: demographics, KAP, professional medical knowledge and attitude of children caregivers toward antimicrobial self-medication. The questionnaire was initially constructed in English and then translated into its final Arabic version. The Arabic version was pilot-tested and face-validated. Descriptive and quantitative analysis were performed using SPSS (V.20.0).
Results Approximately 64% (231) of the studied population used antibiotics without prescription in the past 12 months. This was significantly correlated with female gender and lack of knowledge. The main reason for self-medication was due to saving time and effort (109, 47%) followed by not preferring doctor visits (89, 39%). More than 60% of cases used amoxicillin-clavulanic acid. The main sources of antibiotics were leftovers from previously prescribed pharmaceuticals and those purchased from community pharmacies. 85 participants were young children caregivers of which 18 (21%) reported administering antibiotics to their children without consulting a physician. Out of 115 who claimed attaining medical background, only 30 (26%) managed to answer section 3 correctly with 23 of them reporting antibiotic self-medication.
Conclusion This study showed an increased tendency towards antibiotic self-medication among Alexandrian adults and children that was not significantly decreased in population with medical background. The reasons discussed within the study should be further addressed to decrease such practice.
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