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Research Article Open Access

Herbal medicine use during pregnancy among women in Arbaminch town and surrounding district, southwest Ethiopia: community based cross sectional study

Abstract

Background: Herbal medicines are plant-derived preparations perceived to have healing benefits. There is lack of evidence on their benefit during pregnancy. In Ethiopia, study on herbal remedies use during pregnancy is scanty. Hence, our study aimed to assess the use of herbal remedy and its associated factor during pregnancy among women in Arbaminch town and surrounding district, Southern Ethiopia. Methods: A community-based cross sectional study was conducted in Arbaminch town and surrounding district, southwest Ethiopia, from September to December 2019. A sample of 633 women was involved using the single population proportion formula. Nine rural Kebeles and three urban Kebeles were selected by lottery method. The data was entered into Epidata version 3.1, and then it was exported into SPSS version 20.0. Results : Amongst the 633 participants, 307(48.5%) revealed that they had used at least one herbal remedies for different diseases during their pregnancy. The three most commonly used herbal remedies were flax seed, garlic and ginger. The finding of multivariable logistic regression analysis indicated that Orthodox religion (AOR=1.96, 95%CI(1.27,2.89)), rural residence(AOR=3.15,95 %CI(2.03,4.90)), illiteracy of spouse or husband (AOR=3.15,95%CI=2.03,4.90)), use of herb before pregnancy (AOR=5.35, 95%CI(2.77,10.31)), positive perception toward herbal medicine (AOR=7.29,95% CI(4.46, 11.94)), and unavailability of prescribed medicines in the health care facility (AOR=1.54, 95% CI(1.05, 2.25)) were found to be significantly associated with herbal medicine use during pregnancy. 4 7 e-ISSN:2321-6182 p-ISSN:2347-2332 RRJPRPC | Volume 9 | Issue 1 |March, 2020 2 INTRODUCTION Herbal medicines are plant-derived preparations perceived to have healing benefits[1-3].Herbal medicines consist herbs, herbal preparations, herbal materials and finished products that comprise parts of plants as active constituents[4].Globally, 65 to 80% of the world population use herbal remedy as their main form of medicine [5].Most survey data revealed that female used herbal medicines predominantly [6-8].Studies found that herbal medicine use is high during pregnancy in Eastern Europe (51.9%) [9]; Dhaka, Bangladesh (70%) [10]; Kelantan, Malaysia (51.4 %) [11]; Riyadh, Saudi Arabia (56%) [12]; Melbourne, Australia (36%) [13]; and Norwich, United Kingdom (57.8%)[14]. On the other hand, low prevalence rates of herbal medicine use were reported in Northern Europe (4.3%) [9]; Tabriz, Iran (22.3%) [15]; and Riyadh and Al Kharj, Saudi (25.3%) [16]. The World Health Organization (WHO) report indicated that about 80% of African population use herbal medicine [17]. A study conducted in different regions of Africa revealed that 79.9% in Mali [18], 67.5% in Nigeria [19], 62.7% in Sierra Leone [20], 52.7% in northern Ghana [21], 27.3% in Egypt [22] and 12% in Kenya [23] of pregnant women used herbal medicine. In Ethiopia, a facility-based study conducted in Gondar revealed that 48.6% of pregnant women used herbal medicine and the commonly taken herbal medicines were garlic (19%) and ginger (40.7%) [24]. A facility-based study conducted among pregnant women in Nekemte; western Ethiopia showed that 69.8% of pregnant women used herbal remedies [25]. Very few clinical trials have been published that revealed the benefits of herbal remedies for pregnant women [26-28]. Moreover, concerns have been increased about the side effects of these remedies. Some herbal medicine may cause severe adverse effects on the fetus containing teratogen effect, fetal toxicity, malformation and premature birth [29-33]. Preventing gestational related and delivery related harms associated with herbal medicine use helps to keep the health of the mother and fetus. Assessing the level and predictors of herbal medicine use among pregnant women may aid to achieve the goals of Sustainable Development Goal. Ethiopia has a unified policy, titled National Drug Policy of Ethiopia, which includes both herbal medicines and modern pharmaceuticals. The state office for traditional and complementary medicine is the Food, Medicine and Health Care Administration and the Control Authority (FMHACA) of Ethiopia. No regulations apply to the production of herbal medicines and there are presently no safety necessities. Neither Ethiopia’s national essential medicines lists nor its market surveillance system for safety of medicines, in place since 1999, include herbal medicines. In spite of these known worries, in Ethiopia little is known about herbal medicine use during pregnancy. Therefore, the purpose of this community-based study is to assess the prevalence of herbal medicine use during pregnancy and its associated factor in Arbaminch town and surrounding district, Southern Ethiopia. Materials and Methods Study setting and subjects A community-based cross-sectional study was conducted in Arbaminch town and surrounding district, southwest Ethiopia, from September to December 2019. The area is located at 505Km southwest of Addis Ababa (the capital city of Ethiopia), in the southern state of Ethiopia at elevation of about 1285 meters above sea level. The annual temperature varies from 600F to 910F and the average annual rainfall is 5.6 inches. The study area lies at longitude and latitude of 60 01՛ 59.99՛՛N and 370 32՛ 60.00՛՛ E, respectively. The area consists 40 Kebeles (the lowest administrative unit). Out of the 40 Kebeles, 11 are the urban Kebeles and 29 are the rural Kebeles. The area has a total population of 354,877(male-177,866 and female-177,011). In the area there are 30 health posts, 9 health centers (primary level) and one general hospital (secondary level). Study participants Our source population was all women who had a child less than one month of age and residing in Arbaminch town and surrounding district. The study population was women who had a child less than one month of age and residing in Arbaminch town and surrounding district during the data collection period. All women who had a child less than one month of age, who were permanent residents, and capable of providing informed consent were included in the study. Women who are not physically and mentally capable of being interviewed at the time of data collection were excepted from the study. Sample size and sampling A sample of 633 women was involved using the single population proportion formula seeing the prevalence of herbal medicine Conclusion: Our study shows common use of herbal remedies during pregnancy. Few women disclosed the herbal remedy use to their maternity care professionals. Factors that were significantly related with herbal remedy use were religion, residence, spouse or husband’s educational level, previous use of herbal medicines before pregnancy, attitude toward herbal medicines effectiveness and availability of prescribed medicines in the health care facility. The health authorities should work on awareness creation

Biruk Wogayehu*, Tesfaye Guja, Wondimagegn Taye, Bahiru Mulatu , Yilima Chisha , Mulugeta Dalbo, Thomas Tesfaye, Samuel Hailgebreal EmnetMerdekios

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