Original Research

Antibiotic use amongst pregnant women in a public hospital in KwaZulu-Natal

Sasha Naidoo, Varsha Bangalee, Frasia Oosthuizen
Health SA Gesondheid | Vol 26 | a1516 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hsag.v26i0.1516 | © 2021 Sasha Naidoo, Varsha Bangalee, Frasia Oosthuizen | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 15 July 2020 | Published: 31 May 2021

About the author(s)

Sasha Naidoo, Discipline of Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Health Sciences, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban, South Africa
Varsha Bangalee, Discipline of Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Health Sciences, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban, South Africa
Frasia Oosthuizen, Discipline of Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Health Sciences, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban, South Africa


Share this article

Bookmark and Share

Abstract

Background: Antibiotics are amongst the more frequently prescribed medicines in pregnant women and the use of antibiotics is increasing. However, with limited studies available in this population, the safe use of antibiotics in pregnancy remains a concern.

Aim: To evaluate the use of antibiotics amongst pregnant women attending a public health care facility. The main objective of this study was to quantify the types of antibiotics used in pregnant women.

Setting: A public hospital classified as a referral hospital located in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal.

Methods: Demographic and treatment information of women were collected retrospectively from January 2019 to July 2019. A total of 184 pregnant patients, who received antibiotic therapy, were included in this study. Descriptive and analytical measures were used to analyse both patient demographics and treatment variables.

Results: A total of 416 antibiotic prescriptions, issued to 184 patients, were reviewed. Penicillins (39.7%), macrolides (13.0%) and combination penicillin- and beta-lactam inhibitors (12.3%) were reported as the most commonly prescribed antibiotics. Rifamycin (2.9%), hydrazides (2.2%) and aminoglycosides (1.9%) were less frequently prescribed. Most antibiotics were prescribed for diseases of the circulatory system (36.1%).

Conclusion: Several classes of antibiotics were used in pregnancy despite the lack of available safety data and clinical evidence. Informing women of the potential side effects and keeping abreast with new information played an important role in the safe, rational and effective use of medicines that contributed to improving maternal health.


Keywords

pregnancy; antibiotics; pharmacovigilance; teratogenicity; public healthcare

Metrics

Total abstract views: 151
Total article views: 83


Crossref Citations

No related citations found.