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BioMed Research International
Volume 2015, Article ID 413912, 8 pages
Research Article

Over-the-Counter Drugs and Complementary Medications Use among Children in Southern Italy

Department of Health Sciences, University of Catanzaro “Magna Græcia”, 88100 Catanzaro, Italy

Received 10 April 2015; Accepted 14 May 2015

Academic Editor: Harold K. Simon

Copyright © 2015 Claudia Pileggi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The use of nonprescription medicines (NPDs) for children illnesses without a doctor’s suggestion can lead to unnecessary medication use and is not free of risks. The aim of our study was to examine attitudes and practice of parents towards NPDs use for their children. We also investigated the conditions that may predict NPDs use. A cross-sectional survey was conducted on parents of children attending Community Based Pediatrician (CBP) consultation and data were collected through structured interviews. Positive attitude on NPDs use was reported by 71.4% of parents, and 61.5% of them had administered NPDs in the previous 6 months. Antipyretic drugs were the most frequently used medication class without the supervision of the CBP. A positive attitude towards NPDs was significantly more frequent in parents who did not use the CBP as the sole source of information about drugs. The study demonstrated a widespread use of NPDs in children in our context, supported by a substantial positive attitude towards their safety. However, considering potential harms related to some NPDs and the finding that most parents rely on CBP advice, role of CBP on appropriate use of NPDs by parents should be emphasized.