Archive \ Volume.7 2016 Issue 2

Promoting rational self‑medication of nonsteroidal anti‑inflammatory drugs in Nepal

Santosh Thapa , Pathiyil Ravi Shankar , Subish Palaian , Hisham Aljadhey

Nonsteroidal anti‑inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are a commonly used class of drugs. They are used for self-medication worldwide including Nepal to treat self‑limiting conditions, and mild to moderate symptoms associated with disease. Similar degree of care like prescription‑only drugs is needed for these drugs as these are also linked with many adverse effects. However, nephrotoxicity remains a major concern with these drugs; other systems such as gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, hematologic, respiratory, and hepatic are also affected. The renal effects of analgesics are pronounced among patients with comorbid conditions, hypovolemic state of body and those with concomitant use of nephrotoxic or other drugs. A number of studies on self‑medication all over the world have revealed that NSAIDs are the most commonly used drugs as self‑medication. Easy access to these drugs either in pharmacy or in nonpharmacy outlets has become a reason for proper monitoring of over‑the‑counter use of these drugs. Responsibility remains with all healthcare professionals, either at individual or institutional level, to establish the balance between the benefits and risks associated with these drugs. The consumer who uses the drugs and the policy‑framing bodies are others who could intervene in promoting the rational use of NSAIDs.