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Epidemiological study of the use of drugs for the treatment of urethral diseases

Sexually transmitted diseases are an important public problem today, especially in developing countries. According to WHO data, 685,000 new cases are registered every day worldwide. In addition, they are among the main causes of morbidity, leading to serious complications such as female and male infertility, ectopic pregnancy, urethral stenosis and genital cancer.

The objective of the study, conducted by Senegalese scientists, was to assess the adequacy of the diagnosis and initial treatment of STDs in developing countries. Due to the low level of education of the population in the field of medicine and poor social conditions, self-medication has become a common practice, which has led to the emergence of the phenomenon of the illegal drug trade in Africa and in Asia.

To assess the importance of drug sales on the illegal market, the study was conducted in 50 different work districts in the city of Dakar from February 13 to March 6, 1997. All the drugs purchased from vendors were tested in using standard physico-chemical methods.

As a result of the study, the most commonly purchased drugs for the treatment of urethritis in men were found to be: ampicillin 250 mg capsules (44%); oxytetracycline in 250 mg capsules (24%) and cotrimoxazole in 450 mg tablets (12%). In most cases (88%), these drugs were sold without packaging and only 12% of them were sold in blisters. In 90% of cases, the expiration date of the drug was not indicated. The correct dosages and duration of treatment were only indicated in 6% of the drugs sold.

The physico-chemical analysis was based on external characteristics, the identification and the determination of the concentration of the active substance. Of all the drugs distributed by street vendors, 53.1% had an inappropriate appearance. These were mainly 250 mg of ampicillin (21 samples out of 22) and 250 mg of oxytetracycline (6 samples out of 12). In addition, only one of the 22 ampicillin samples tested found an active substance.

Given the volume of illegal drug sales and their negative impact on health, the researchers believe that it is necessary to take adequate measures to eliminate this harmful trend by combining the efforts of health workers and the population of these people. country.