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Year : 2011  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 17  |  Page : 93-97

Dispensing of OTC Drugs for Dental Problems by Pharmacists in Suburban Areas of Hyderabad- A Cross Sectional Study

Department of preventive and community dentistry, Sri Sai College of Dental surgery, Vikarabad, India

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

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Objective: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the pharmacist's role and rationale of dispensing medicines OTC (over the counter) for dental ailments and to assess the impact of their knowledge and attitude on oral health care in suburban areas of Hyderabad. Materials and methods: A cross sectional study among a sample of pharmacists in suburban areas of Hyderabad was conducted and data was collected using a closed - ended questionnaire regarding rationale of dispensing drugs OTC and substituting dental prescriptions by pharmacists. Results: Among 62 pharmacists, who participated in the study and completed the questionnaire, 95.2% accepted that they dispense medicines without prescription for dental ailments. The major reasons cited by them for dispensing medicines were, patient's poverty (45.6%), unavailability of Dentist(29.8%), considering dental problem as a minor ailment (36.8%). 56.3% agreed that they dispense both painkillers and antibiotics. Tooth pain (98.4%) was the major dental problem for which the patients approach them. 61.3% felt the reasons for which patient's approach them, rather than dentist, were expensive treatment, time consuming nature of dental treatment and fear of the dentist. 77.5% accepted that substitution was more common for dental prescriptions and 58.1% said that they call up dentists to ask permission for substitution. Conclusion: The present study shows that, the majority pharmacists are dispensing drugs for dental ailments and also trying to motivate them to near by dentist. Hence there is a need for conducting pharmacy educating programs so that every one will be benefited.

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