Parental knowledge attitude and practices about chemical and medicinal poisons: A hospital based study from Karachi, Pakistan

Feroza Perveen, Naveed Ahmed, Sarwat Masud, Muhammad Umair Ihsan, Uzma Rahim Khan, Nadeem Ullah Khan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Unintentional poisoning is among the leading cause of death in children less than 20 years age. The incidence of unintentional poisoning in Low-income countries LMICs is four times higher compared to high-income countries (HICs). In Pakistan a 10% (25/211) incidence of unintentional poisonings among 0–15-year-old children has been reported. Most of the poisoning occur because of household chemical and medicines. This study aimed to assess the knowledge, attitude, and practices (KAP) of parents in Karachi regarding poisonous household chemicals and medicines. Methods: This KAP study was conducted at Aga Khan University Hospital, Karachi from May to August 2019. A maximum sample of 384 was calculated using a 50% knowledge about household chemicals. Data were collected about parental knowledge, attitude and practices about poisons and chemicals at home and presented as frequency and percentages. Chi-square test of independence (or Fisher's exact test) was used. Data were analyzed using SPSS version 20. Results: A total of 364 parents of 0–16-year-old children completed the survey out of which 229 were mothers and 127 were fathers (eight had missing data). We had 70% of parents that kept chemicals and medicines locked in cabinets and 80% chose to never leave medicines unattended, there are still 20–30% parents that need improvement in the parental knowledge and practices for storing chemicals and medicines. A general lack of knowledge regarding poisoning first aid and emergency response centers was noted. Conclusions: Two-pronged approach for future interventions could be useful; (1) Improving the knowledge and practice among the remaining 20–30% through repeated awareness’ sessions for the community. (2) Information regarding PCCS needs to be made readily available to the parents which is a measure useful in cases a child poisoning occurs.

Original languageEnglish
Article number110481
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2023


  • Chemical
  • Child poisoning
  • Medicines
  • Pakistan
  • Parental knowledge
  • Tertiary care hospital
  • Toxins
  • Unintentional poisoning


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