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J Pak Med Assoc. 2012 May;62(5):426-9.

Drug utilization patterns in Rawalpindi and Islamabad, Pakistan.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, Military Hospital Rawalpindi.



To assess the prevalence of self medication among Pakistanis in rural and urban settings.


A door-to-door survey was carried out during June and July 2008 and 2009 after due verbal consent taken from the residents. The houses were randomly selected from ultra posh area, quarters of government employees, residents of Barani Training Institute, low socio-economic population in the surrounding of Adiallah road near Rawalpindi, and a remote village Raye Chak, (population 5000) some 50 kilometers away from the city.


There were 2042 dosage forms of drugs from 430 houses; allopathic medicine 89.3%; traditional medicines 6.7%; and homeopathic drugs 4% representation. The top 10 companies had more than 57% market share among 147 firms whose products were reported. The availability of paediatric drugs mixtures/syrups was 24%, and injectiables, 5.5%. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) had 38% representation; antimicrobials 25%, multivitamins and haematinics were 1.6% that was contrary to the general perception of the irrational use of this group of medicines.


Alternative medicine is gaining ground. Overuse of anti-inflammatory drugs suggest higher prevalence of pain, inflammation and infections than systemic disorders in society.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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