Knowledge and pain management of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) side effects linked to gender

 Severija Pažemeckaitė,1 Lukas Pajėda1, Akvilė Ūsaitė2
1 Faculty of Medicine, Medical Academy, Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Kaunas, Lithuania

2 Department of Nephrology, Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Kaunas Clinics, Lithuania


Introduction: Pain is a common medical problem and the relief of it is one of the most important therapeutic goals. Over the past decade, there have been growing concerns about the harm – abuse, as well as serious injury and death – caused by the use of “over the counter” painkillers. These concerns have emerged in parallel to evolving pain management’s importance in medical care. It is necessary to maintain the balance between providing access and the demand of medications for those in need.

Aim of  study: To evaluate factors influencing the choice of non prescription drugs against mild – moderate pain.

Objectives: To determine and compare the most frequent type of pain in men and women groups. To compare the frequency of NSAID’s used to manage pain in different gender groups. To evaluate the Lithuanian citizen’s knowledge about NSAIDs side effects and compare it with gender groups.

Methods: The online questionnaire form was applied for the two biggest Lithuania’s cities – Vilnius and Kaunas – citizens. Total 99 respondents in the age of 19-80 years were interviewed. IBM SPSS Statistics ver.19.0 was used for categorical data analysis χ2 and Fisher’s exact tests were performed. P <0.05 was evaluated as statistically significant.

Results: According to the gender respondents distributed equally by 51 (51.1%) males and 48 (49.9%) females. Most women tend to suffer from pain 1 time per month (41.2%) and most of men (39.6%) indicated suffering from pain rare than 1 time pro six months, p =0.003. The women were more likely to mark gastric ulcers (68.9%), renal insufficiency (68.4%) as the NSAID’s side effect than men (31.1 % and 31.6 5 respectively). Mostly women use NSAIDS for menstrual (66.7%), headache (74.5%), and muscle pain (17.7), men uses it for back pain (43.8%) and headache (35.1%), P<0.05. Women (66.7 %) were more likely to choose ibuprofen than the men (41.7%), p<0.05. In other NSAIDs the consumption choice does not statistically differ.

Conclusions: Frequently the menstrual pain and headaches are treated with NSAIDS in women group, and back pain and headache in men group. Women tend to use NSAIDs against the pain one time per month and most of the males tend to use it as rare as 1 time per 6 months. Both men and women groups showed the lack of information about NSAIDS side effects (with women showing more knowledge in gastric ulcer and renal insufficiency as a side effect).

Keywords:  NSAID, men – women pain, aspirin, pain management.