Mon, 09/30/2013

Risks of Self-Treatment

The doctors of PGD International are sought-after experts for journalists to discuss medical matters. Their expertise is in high demand and doctors of the hospitals of PGD International are regular guests in programs and talk shows, or they are interviewed for newspapers and magazines or are asked to write expert articles. Because we are proud of the achievements of our doctors and our professional staff, we like to keep you up to date about their appearances and publications and translate them for a better understanding for you. Today we would like to draw your attention to a report broadcasted in the programme “zibb” of local TV-station rbb about the dangers of self-medication.

More and more people tend to treat themselves, especially when they only have a cold or a headache. But selftreatment carries some grave risks because it is difficult to judge the symptoms correctly and almost all drugs, even when prescription-free, have side effects and can dangerously interact with other substances.

Dr. Clemens Fahrig, head physician and medical director of Hubertus Hospital in Berlin which is part of the PGD International hospital network, gave the programme “zibb” of local TV-station rbb an interview about the risks of selfmedication.

To give you an idea about what dimensions we are talking: the information system of the German Federal Health Monitoring System has researched the following figures for self-medication in 2011 in Germany. The researchers asked 4,613 people who treated themselves about the category they did it in. 1,171 did it within the category "cough and cold", 638 within "stomach and constipation", 445 within "pain", 437 within "skin, mucous membranes, wounds" and 191 within "calming, sedative and mood".

The danger of false self-treatment

When people assess and treat symptoms wrongly for a long time it can become quite dangerous. Clemens Fahrig speaks of a patient who thought his abdominal pain was triggered by constipation and therefore had been treated himself for a longer period with laxatives. Finally, the internist has found advanced cancer tumors that have caused the stomach ache. In such cases false self-medication can be fatal if the real cause is not treated appropriately and early.

Areas of frequent self-medication

The remedy for colds are used most often. Many sufferers know from experience to what remedies they respond best. However zibb-expert Clemens Fahrig warns not to treat oneself for too long. If the infection is too preserving, inflammation can also affect the lungs. Insofar adults with high fever, persistent cough and body aches need to visit the doctor.

Painkillers are in demand throughout the year. So everyone thinks he or she can self-medicate oneself. But beware: painkillers must not be taken without medical supervision over a long time. The consequences can be serious, especially because pain killers attack the stomach lining and cause ulcers.

Self-treatment of vein problems

The Internet also provides advice for complex vascular diseases, diagnoses and the appropriate medication mix. Heavy and swollen legs often have to do with vein problems. There are all sorts of ointments and compression stockings available over the counter or just a mouse click away. The fatal thing about it is, that the cause of the symptoms is not medically diagnosed accurately. But every abnormalities must undergo a reputable medical examination. Only this can determine the exact cause for swollen legs which can have different reason as problems with the veins, cardiac problems of the heart or about a problem that is related to rheumatism.

After an accurate diagnosis a doctor will prescribe the correct medication which is the basis for a serious treatment and healing process.

If you are interested in a medical check-up please contact us.