Post-Market Safety and Efficacy Surveillance of Herbal Medicinal Products from Users' Perspective: A Qualitative Semi-Structured Interview Study in Kumasi, Ghana
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CitationAdusei-Mensah, Frank. Haaranen, Ari. Kauhanen, Jussi. Tikkanen-Kaukanen, Carina. Henneh, Isaac Tabiri. Ganu, Daniel. Ametsetor, Ebenezer Seklu Edem. Olaleye, Sunday Adewale. Ekor, Martins. (2019). Post-Market Safety and Efficacy Surveillance of Herbal Medicinal Products from Users' Perspective: A Qualitative Semi-Structured Interview Study in Kumasi, Ghana. International Journal of Pharmaceutics & Pharmacology, 3 (1) , 1-11. 10.31531/2581-3080.1000136.
Objective: Despite the increased patronage of herbal medicinal products (HMP), they remain poorly regulated in Ghana and their efficacy and safety data is seldom adequate. The objective of the present study is to provide insight into concerns regarding post-market HMP safety and efficacy from the perspectives of users in Kumasi, Ghana.
Methods: Thirty-seven randomly selected HMP consumers in Kumasi, were interviewed using semi-structured questionnaire. Non-users of HMPs and users less than 18 years were excluded from the study. Mixed method sampling method was used for the study.
Results: HMPs were reported to be gentle and safer than orthodox medicines by informants. Only 19% of informants voluntarily reported HMP use to their general practitioner. Informants (94.6%) experienced minimal effects, whiles (5.4%) experienced moderately severe adverse effects.
Conclusion: It was observed from the study that some HMPs are however non-effective and harmful. We would suggest that HMP users should exercise caution with regards to where to buy and when using HM. “Shyness” and the “feeling of being condemned by the physician” were identified to be the possible causes of the communication barrier between the physicians and the HM users. We recommend physicians to initiate discussion on this topic during consultations and guide users on safe use of these HMPs.