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Journal of Biological Sciences
Year: 2017  |  Volume: 17  |  Issue: 8  |  Page No.: 400 - 409

Herbal Medicine Use by People in Jordan: Exploring Believes and Knowledge of Herbalists and Their Customers

Reem A. Issa and Iman A. Basheti    

Abstract: Background and Objective: Many customers visit the local herbal medicine stores to seek treatments for their acute and chronic health conditions. No previous study has investigated customer and herbalist believes and knowledge with regards to the safe and efficient use of herbal medicines in Jordan. This study aims to explore herbal medicine use amongst the public in Jordan and to identify the most frequent herbal medicine used for the treatment of varied health conditions. Secondary aim includes assessing believes and knowledge of herbalists and customers on the use of herbal medicine. Methodology: A questionnaire based survey was conducted in order to explore believes and knowledge of herbalists and customers towards the safe and efficient use of herbal medicines in Amman, Jordan. Data were analyzed by SPSS. Results: The majority of herbalists (64%) believed that use of herbal medicine by customers with chronic conditions can help in their treatment or in reducing the doses of their conventional medicines. Herbalists (69%) tend to always refer their customers to their medical doctor/pharmacist when using herbal medicine and conventional medicine simultaneously. Herbalist's believes in herbal medicine use was not affected by their length of study experience, geographic location or their level of education. To treat their chronic conditions 58.5% of the customers were using herbal medicine. A high proportion (65.1 and 74.5%) of customers reported to have high believes in herbal medicine efficacy and safety over conventional medicine. Herbalists chose work experience (50.6%), family and friends, published papers, books and the internet to be their sources in obtaining their knowledge on herbal medicine use. Customers chose the herbalist to be their first choice as a source of knowledge on herbal medicine. Conclusion: There was a high believe in herbal medicine use by both herbalists and customers in Jordan. Customers obtain their knowledge primarily from the herbalists and herbalists obtain their knowledge primarily from their work experience. An urgent need for the concerned regulatory bodies to provide reliable source of herbal medicinal education pertaining to herbal medication use safety and efficacy is called for.

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