Herbal medicines: a cross-sectional study to evaluate the prevalence and predictors of use among Jordanian adults

Faris El-Dahiyat, Mohamed Rashrash, Sawsan Abuhamdah, Rana Abu Farha, Zaheer-Ud-Din Babar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction: Understanding why adults resort to herbal medicine can help in planning interventions aimed at increasing awareness regarding herbal use. This study sought to investigate the prevalence and to determine factors for predicting the use of herbal medicine among Jordanian adults. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted involving 378 older adults who were randomly selected from two different areas of Jordan. A questionnaire was used to gather data and validation criteria for validity and reliability of the content were tested by content and face validity in a panel of experts. Results: From a total of 500 invited participants, 378 completed the questionnaire. The prevalence of the use of of herbal products in this study was high at 80.2%. Herbal medicines use was not associated with any demographic factors other than age (p < 0.05). Moreover, the only associated health-related characteristic was the patient's disease state including, notably, hypertension (p < 0.05). Reasons for not using herbal medicines as reported by nonusers included mainly a lack of belief in their efficacy (52.2%). Another two important reasons were that the individuals believed themselves to healthy and have no need for their use (31.3%) and the unavailability of enough information about the herbal medicines (29.7%). Finally, the most common side effects as reported by patients in this study were nausea and vomiting (9.3%), and, to a lesser extent, skin rash (2.1%). Conclusion: There is a high rate of use of herbal medicines in Jordan, especially among hypertensive patients. Therefore, there is a need to establish effective herbal medicine policies and health education programs to discuss the benefits and risks of herbal medicine use, with the aim of maximizing patient-desired therapeutic outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Pharmaceutical Policy and Practice
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 21 Jan 2020


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