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Journal of Advances in Medicine and Medical Research, ISSN: 2456-8899, ISSN: 2231-0614 (Past),Vol.: 23, Issue.: 1


Medical Practitioners and their Health: Doctors’ Personal Health Care Choices in Port Harcourt, Nigeria


C. E. Nwafor1, C. A. Alikor1* and N. N. Unamba1

1Department of Medicine, University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital, Nigeria.

Article Information


(1) Ravi Kumar Chittoria, Department of Plastic Surgery & Advanced Centre for Microvascular, Maxillofacial & Craniofacial, Laser Surgery, Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Pondicherry, India.


(1) Njoku O. Ama, University of Botswana, Botswana.

(2) Rosella Tomassoni, University of Cassino and Southern Lazio, Italy.

Complete Peer review History:


Background: Doctors have a poor record of attending to their own health. Treatable conditions such as hypertension go unrecognised, health screening is avoided, and most doctors don’t have a general practitioner. This is recognised as a major issue for physicians resulting in initiatives to address this problem. Although papers have been written to address physicians’ health-seeking behaviour in other parts of the world, this is yet to be documented in Nigeria as far as we know.

Methods: An anonymous cross-sectional questionnaire survey was conducted among medical practitioners attending a general meeting. One hundred medical practitioners responded to the questionnaire and were surveyed. The data obtained were tabulated and analysed.

Results: There were 100 respondents to the survey. Most of the respondents were in the 31-50 years’ age-group. Fifty-three percent of the study population were registered with a general practitioner, and the proportion of female medical practitioners registered with general medical practitioners was less than that of their male counterparts. Majority (64%) of the respondents however consulted an independent specialist for health care. Eighty percent of the respondents had been vaccinated for the hepatitis B virus, while 39.6% had checked their cholesterol, 70.3% had checked their blood sugar, and 99% had checked their blood pressure in the past year. Among the female medical practitioners 32.3% and 9.7% had done a Pap smear and screening mammogram respectively. Similarly, in this study, among the male doctors 40 years and above, only 14% had ever done a PSA.

Conclusion: The health-seeking behaviour of medical practitioners in Port Harcourt is commendable. Medical practitioners in Port Harcourt should however be encouraged to seek and utilize the tools of preventive care optimally in order to safe-guard their health while providing medical care for the general populace.

Keywords :

Doctors; personal; health care; choices; Port Harcourt.

Full Article - PDF    Page 1-6

DOI : 10.9734/JAMMR/2017/33954

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