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Year : 2013  |  Volume : 54  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 96-99

Anti-malaria prescription in pregnancy among general practitioners in Enugu state, south east Nigeria

1 Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Ituku-Ozalla, Enugu, Nigeria
2 Department of Hematology & Immunology, University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Ituku-Ozalla, Enugu, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Emmanuel Onyebuchi Ugwu
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Enugu
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0300-1652.110038

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Background: The national policy on malaria control recommends use of intermittent preventive treatment with sulfadoxine/pyrimethamine (IPT-SP) for chemoprophylaxis against malaria in pregnancy; and use of quinine and arthemisinin-based combination therapy (ACT) for acute treatment of malaria in the first, and second/third trimesters, respectively. In Nigeria, a large proportion of pregnant women are seen by the general practitioners (GPs). Objective: To determine the pattern of anti-malaria prescription in pregnancy among GPs in Enugu state, and access the level of conformity with the national policy on malaria control. Materials and Methods: Questionnaires were administered to a cross-section of 147 GPs that attended the 2010 Enugu state branch of the Nigeria Medical Association Scientific Conference/Annual General Meeting/Election. Results: The mean age of the GPs was 37 ± 3.6 (range 27-70) years. Quinine was the commonly (45.6% ( n = 67)) prescribed anti-malaria drug in the first trimester while in the second/third trimester ACT was commonly (48.3% ( n = 71)) prescribed. Seventy-six (51.7%) practitioners prescribed IPT-SP for chemoprophylaxis against malaria while the rest (48.3%) prescribed other drugs. GPs who obtained MBBS qualification less than or equal to 5 years prior to the survey were more likely to comply with the national policy on malaria control in their prescriptions ( P < 0.05). Conclusion: The pattern of anti-malaria prescription among GPs in Enugu state is varied, and conformed poorly to the evidence-based national policy on malaria control. There is need for continuing professional development to keep the GPs abreast with current trends in malaria treatment during pregnancy.

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