PREDICTIVE CHARACTERISTICS OF USERS OF ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE Janko KERSNIK Department of family medicine, University Ljubljana
Alternative medicine phenomena <ul><li>Alternative medicine is a world-wide phenomena </li></ul><ul><li>Utilisation of alternative medicine practices differ from 6% up to 42% of the population in different countries </li></ul>
Methods <ul><li>Postal survey of a representative sample of patients from 36 family practices in Slovenia </li></ul><ul><li>2160 patients approached </li></ul><ul><li>A self-administered instruments: EUROPEP, EuroQol, Duke-AD </li></ul>
Results - 1 <ul><li>81%response rate </li></ul><ul><li>115/1753 (6,6%) reported to visits alternative practitioner in 1997 </li></ul><ul><li>They were of middle age group , more likely had a chronic conditions , had lower perception of quality of life , had grater presence of symptoms of anxiety and depression and expressed grater needs for emergency treatment , they were heavier users of primary and secondary care, they have changed their GP recently. </li></ul>
Results - 2 <ul><li>Three components (the first component ( self-care and visiting specialist of hospital in the same year ), the second component ( change of a personal GP and a higher level of formal education ) and the third component ( younger age ) explained 66,2% of the variance </li></ul>
Conclusions <ul><li>Seeking alternative medicine practices seems to be led by patient characteristics but they were not significantly dissatisfied with the GP with whom they were registered lately </li></ul><ul><li>GPs should inquire their patients about the use of alternative practices especially in patients who are more likely to seek such help </li></ul>
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