Use Of Herbs Among People With Type II Diabetes: A Study Of Mueang District, Lampang Province, Thailand

Piyatida Junlapeeya, O-Pas Pramoonsin, Chaunpis Intasong, Natticha Jaruenporn, Gewalin Jannuan


Uncontrolled blood sugar level in people with Type II Diabetes Mellitus leads to serious complications. Controlling blood sugar level is still a big challenge which leads to the use of herbs. This survey study aimed to investigate the use of herbs among persons with type 2 diabetes residing in Mueang District, Lampang Province. Stratified random sampling technique was used to recruit 374 participants. Data were collected using the 22 closed-ended, self-reported herb use questionnaire. Content validation was done by five experts and yielded the index of congruence of 0.95. Dataanalysis  was conducted using descriptive statistics. Results showed that 300 participants (80.21%) did not take herbs because they were not confident about its efficacy (34%). Seventy-four participants (19.79 %) took herbs to lower blood sugar level and alleviate disease complications. Sixty-four participants (90.14%) took herbs with prescribed medications while 7 (9.86%) decreased the use of their prescribed medications. Thirtyeight types of herbs were reported and the top three were Yanang (Tiliacora triandra), Ma Toom - Bael (Aegle marmelos), and Siang Da (Gymnema inodorum). Twenty-three participants (31.08%) were recommended to use herbs by friends and 13 (17.57%) by healthcare personnel. Thirty-one participants (41.89%) never evaluated the effectiveness of herbs. Eight participants (10.81%) reported heart palpitation, fainting, and stomachache as side effects. Twenty-six participants (35.14%) were asked about the use of herbs by healthcare personnel. Fifty-three participants (71.62%) did not notify healthcare personnel about their use of herbs because they were never asked and afraid to be blamed. Sixty-two participants (88.78%) would like to receive more advice from healthcare personnel regarding their use of herbs. Healthcare personnel should provide assurance and are obligated to assess and advice effective integration of herbs and prescribed medications.

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