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A population-based study of risk perceptions of paracetamol use among Swedes-with a special focus on young adults.

Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift
Författare Helle Håkonsen
Tove Hedenrud
Publicerad i Pharmacoepidemiology and drug safety
Volym 26
Nummer/häfte 8
Sidor 992-997
ISSN 1099-1557
Publiceringsår 2017
Publicerad vid Institutionen för medicin, avdelningen för samhällsmedicin och folkhälsa
Sidor 992-997
Språk en
Länkar dx.doi.org/10.1002/pds.4238
www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.f...
Ämneskategorier Samhällsfarmaci och klinisk farmaci

Sammanfattning

The purpose of this study was to investigate risk perceptions of paracetamol use, with a special focus on young adults.A web survey was sent to a representative sample (n = 5838) of the Swedish adult population. Altogether, 3120 persons answered the full questionnaire. Risk perceptions of paracetamol use in relation to sex, age, and education were determined using logistic regression.Most respondents (70.5%) reported use of paracetamol in the 3 months prior to the study; the highest proportion was found among those aged 18 to 25 years (75.8%). Nine in 10 were over-the-counter (OTC) paracetamol users. A total of 14.2% thought paracetamol is completely harmless to use while 54.3% indicated risks associated with use even when following the dosing instructions. One third disagreed that it is less risky to use paracetamol compared with nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs. Three-quarters identified liver damage as a potential consequence of exceeding the recommended maximum daily dose. The likelihood of a high-risk perception was higher in women compared with men, and increased with age. No association was found between risk perception and educational status. Participants aged 18 to 25 years had the same ability to identify risks of overdose as did those aged 26 to 65, but expressed more careless attitudes towards use.Although the study population purchased paracetamol primarily OTC, they demonstrated basic awareness of paracetamol use including the potential consequences of overdosing. Young adults (18-25 y), who were the most frequent users of OTC paracetamol, perceived less risk associated with use compared with older participants.

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