Scientific article
Open access

Who are the patients who use non-pharmacological home remedies ? Cross-sectional study in Switzerland and France

Published inFamily practice, cmae030
Publication date2024-05-27
First online date2024-05-27

Background: Many patients may be tempted to use non-pharmacological home remedies (NPHRs) to relieve various complaints. To the best of our knowledge, there is little data on the characteristics of patients using NPHRs. In this cross-sectional study carried out between March 2020 and July 2021, we examined the socio-demographic factors underlying their use in patient populations in Switzerland and France.

Methods: Using official registries, we randomly selected 50 primary care physicians (PCPs) in Geneva (Switzerland) and Lyon/Grenoble (France). Seven research assistants consecutively recruited patients from PCP waiting rooms (20-25 patients per practice). Patients completed a paper-based questionnaire assessing the use [yes/no] of 304 NPHRs for 79 medical conditions. The NPHR list was developed by our team with input from 97 patients. We used univariable and multivariable logistic regressions, adjusting for intra-cluster correlations, to examine associations between NPHR use and patient characteristics (gender, age, practice location, nationality, education level, and self-rated health).

Results: Of the 1198 eligible patients, 1012 agreed to participate (85%). Overall, 635 patients (63%) reported using at least one of the remedies tested in the study. In multivariable analysis, women (OR = 1.7 [95%CI = 1.3-2.3], P-value < 0.001), younger patients (< 40 years: OR = 2.1 [95%CI = 1.6-2.9], P-value < 0.001), and French patients (OR = 1.6 [95%CI = 1.1-2.3], P-value < 0.001) tended to use NPHRs more often than other patients.

Conclusions: Many patients, particularly women, young people, and French patients, reported using NPHRs. This survey's findings hold the potential to inform healthcare providers, policymakers, and researchers about the diverse preferences that shape patients' healthcare choices.

  • France
  • Switzerland
  • Home remedy
  • Patient characteristic
  • Primary care
  • Survey
  • Woman
Citation (ISO format)
SEBOE, Paul et al. Who are the patients who use non-pharmacological home remedies ? Cross-sectional study in Switzerland and France. In: Family practice, 2024, p. cmae030. doi: 10.1093/fampra/cmae030
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Article (Published version)
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ISSN of the journal0263-2136

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