University of Oulu

Frank AM, Ari H, Jussi K, et al. Post-Market Safety and Efficacy Surveillance of Herbal Medicinal Products from Users’ Perspective: A Qualitative Semi-Structured Interview Study in Kumasi, Ghana. Int J Pharm Pharmacol 2019; 3: 136. doi: 10.31531/2581-3080.1000136

Post-market safety and efficacy surveillance of herbal medicinal products from users’ perspective : a qualitative semi-structured interview study in Kumasi, Ghana

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Author: Adusei-Mensah, Frank1; Haaranen, Ari2; Kauhanen, Jussi1;
Organizations: 1Institute of Public Health and Clinical Nutrition, School of Medicine, University of Eastern Finland, Finland
2Department of Nursing Science, University of Eastern Finland, Kuopio, Finland
3Helsinki Institute of Sustainability Science and Ruralia Institute, University of Helsinki, Finland
4Department of Pharmacology, School of Medical Sciences, University of Cape Coast, Cape Coast, Ghana
5School of Postgraduate Program, Adventist University of Africa, Nairobi, Kenya
6Department of Biochemistry, School of Biological Sciences, University of Cape Coast, Cape Coast, Ghana
7Department of Marketing, Management and International Business, University of Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.5 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Edwiser International, 2019
Publish Date: 2019-11-15


Objective: Despite the increased patronage of herbal medicinal products (HMP), they remain poorly regulated in Ghana and their efficacy and safety data is seldom adequate. The objective of the present study is to provide insight into concerns regarding post-market HMP safety and efficacy from the perspectives of users in Kumasi, Ghana.

Methods: Thirty-seven randomly selected HMP consumers in Kumasi, were interviewed using semi-structured questionnaire. Non-users of HMPs and users less than 18 years were excluded from the study. Mixed method sampling method was used for the study.

Results: HMPs were reported to be gentle and safer than orthodox medicines by informants. Only 19% of informants voluntarily reported HMP use to their general practitioner. Informants (94.6%) experienced minimal effects, whiles (5.4%) experienced moderately severe adverse effects

Conclusion: It was observed from the study that some HMPs are however non-effective and harmful. We would suggest that HMP users should exercise caution with regards to where to buy and when using HM. “Shyness” and the “feeling of being condemned by the physician” were identified to be the possible causes of the communication barrier between the physicians and the HM users. We recommend physicians to initiate discussion on this topic during consultations and guide users on safe use of these HMPs

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Series: International Journal of Pharmaceutics & Pharmacology
ISSN: 2581-3080
ISSN-E: 2581-3080
ISSN-L: 2581-3080
Volume: 3
Issue: 1
Article number: 136
DOI: 10.31531/2581-3080.1000136
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 3142 Public health care science, environmental and occupational health
Copyright information: ©2019 Frank AM, et al. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.