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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2015, 12(6), 7002-7016; doi:10.3390/ijerph120607002

Public Knowledge, Beliefs and Behavior on Antibiotic Use and Self-Medication in Lithuania

1
Institute of Physiology and Pharmacology, Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, A. Mickeviciaus Str. 9, Kaunas 44307, Lithuania
2
Institute of Microbiology and Virology, Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Kaunas 49264, Lithuania
3
Department of Anesthesiology, Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Kaunas 50161, Lithuania
4
Department of Neurology, Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Kaunas 50161, Lithuania
These authors contributed equally to this work.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Tetsuji Yamada
Received: 23 February 2015 / Revised: 26 May 2015 / Accepted: 27 May 2015 / Published: 17 June 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health Behavior and Public Health)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [710 KB, uploaded 17 June 2015]

Abstract

Irrational antibiotic use has led society to antibiotic resistance—a serious health problem worldwide. This study aimed to assess public knowledge, beliefs, and behavior concerning antibiotic use and self-medication in Lithuania. The cross-sectional survey method was processed using a validated questionnaire in different regions of Lithuania. In total, 1005 adults completed the questionnaire and were included in the study. More than half of the respondents (61.1%) had poor knowledge of antibiotics. Almost half of the respondents incorrectly identified antibiotics as being effective either against viral (26.0%) or mixed (bacterial and viral) infections (21.7%). The respondents with lower educational qualifications (OR = 2.515; 95% CI 1.464–4.319; p = 0.001) and those from rural areas (OR = 1.765; 95% CI 1.041–2.991; p = 0.035) were significantly less knowledgeable of antibiotics. There was no significant difference between genders, different age groups, or different parenthood status. The determined level of self–medication with antibiotics was 31.0%. The men (OR = 1.650; 95% CI 1.120–2.430; p = 0.011), the respondents from rural areas (OR = 2.002; 95% CI 1.343–2.985; p = 0.001), and those without children (OR = 2.428; 95% CI 1.477–3.991; p < 0.001) were more likely to use antibiotics in self-medication. Lithuanian residents’ knowledge of antibiotics is insufficient. More information about antibiotic use should be provided by physicians and pharmacists. Self-medication with antibiotics is a serious problem in Lithuania and requires considerable attention. View Full-Text
Keywords: antibiotics; knowledge; rational antibiotic use; self-medication; risk factors; antibiotic resistance; parent behavior; Lithuania antibiotics; knowledge; rational antibiotic use; self-medication; risk factors; antibiotic resistance; parent behavior; Lithuania
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Pavydė, E.; Veikutis, V.; Mačiulienė, A.; Mačiulis, V.; Petrikonis, K.; Stankevičius, E. Public Knowledge, Beliefs and Behavior on Antibiotic Use and Self-Medication in Lithuania. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2015, 12, 7002-7016.

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