Annals of African Medicine
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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 17  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 70-74

Topical ear drop self-medication practice among the Ear, Nose, and Throat patients in Ido Ekiti, Nigeria: A cross - sectional study

Department of Ear, Nose and Throat Surgery, Federal Teaching Hospital Ido-Ekiti, Ekiti State, / Afe Babalola University Ado Ekiti (ABUAD), Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Toye Gabriel Olajide
Department of Ear, Nose and Throat Surgery, Federal Teaching Hospital, Ido-Ekiti, Ekiti State, Afe Babalola University Ado Ekiti (ABUAD)
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/aam.aam_28_17

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Background: Self-medication is a common habit in our country; Nigeria, especially among patients with otorhinolaryngological disorders. Medication when taken wrongly may bring dire consequences to the individual, such as masking developing diseases and may cause many other undesirable effects. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence and to analyze topical ear drop self-medication practices among respondents attending the Ear, Nose, and Throat Clinic of Federal Teaching Hospital Ido Ekiti, Nigeria. Design and Methodology: A 6-month hospital based cross-sectional study was conducted among patients who were seen in the Ear, Nose, and Throat facility of Federal Teaching Hospital, Ido Ekiti from July to December 2016 to determine topical ear drop self-medication practices. A pretested semi-structured questionnaire was used to obtained information from respondents. Results: A total of 162 respondents out of 493 patients seen during the study had otological problems. Of which 107 (66%) respondents had engaged in self-medication with topical ear drops. Their ages ranged between 2 and 83 years with a mean age of 36.6 ± 19.1 years. There were 75 males and 87 females. The major reason for self-medication was that their ailments were minor in about 40.2% and the most common indication for self-medication was ear blockage with hearing impairment (33.6%). Pharmacy/chemist shops (42%) were major sources of information for those that self-medicated. Chloramphenicol and gentamycin were the major drugs that were used by the respondents. Conclusion: Majority of the respondents in this study practiced self-medication using different topical ear drops. Major source of information on the topical ear drops used was from pharmacy/chemist shops. There is a need for adequate public health education to create awareness among people on the danger of self-medication and to enact or enforce the law to reduce access to over the counter drugs. Healthcare should be made available and avoidable at primary health-care level.

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