Complementary and Alternative Medicines Use in Diabetes Mellitus: A Descriptive Cross-Sectional Study in Pakistan

Author : Muhammad Kamran, Zakir Khan, Mohammad Ismail

Objectives: The main objective of this study was to determine the pattern of Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) used in patients having Diabetes mellitus (DM) and their attitudes, beliefs and perception towards CAM in North West region of Pakistan. Material and Methods: A three months descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted in tertiary care teaching hospital, Peshawar, Pakistan. We interviewed total 121 individuals having diabetes using a standard questionnaire, and examined carefully for diabetes type and CAM usage pattern. Results: 73 male and 48 female patients with average age of 52.76 years, among which majority were illiterate and from rural background having high income were using some form of CAM to treat their diabetes. The increase CAM usage level in addition to conventional medicines found in our study substantiates that individuals may use CAM medicines as adjuvant to conventional medicines. Multivitamin, ginseng and herbal products were the most frequently used CAM modalities. Interestingly ethno medicinal local plants named Caralluma tuberculata (n= 11) and Solanum surrattens Burm.f. (n= 10) were recorded as the most widely used CAM with highest satisfaction level to control DM. Conclusion: A majority of peoples used CAM and having good belief and attitude regarding CAM.

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