Using Low-Dose Aspirin in the Prevention of Pre-eclampsia and Screening for High-risk: An Assessment of Health Workers' Knowledge and Practices in South-western Uganda

Prisca Asiimwe*, Laura Brennaman, Diana Mbatudde and Justus Asasira

Background: Pre-eclampsia is a major contributor to maternal and perinatal mortality and morbidity worldwide particularly in low-income countries like Uganda. The World Health Organization recommends screening and initiating all pregnant women at high risk for pre-eclampsia on low-dose Aspirin. However, it is not known whether health workers in Uganda are aware of its application and whether they use the drug use in preventing pre-eclampsia.

Aim of the study: The study aimed at assessing the knowledge and self-reported practices of health workers on the use of low-dose aspirin in preventing pre-eclampsia among high-risk pregnant women in two districts in Western Uganda. Additionally, the study aimed to establish alternative approaches health workers use to prevent preeclampsia in high-risk pregnant women.

Methods: The study employed a descriptive cross-sectional study design. Data were collected using a participant selfadministered questionnaire from 136 health workers in Mbarara and Bushenyi districts. Data were analysed using SPSS version 18.

Results: The majority of participants (63%) were aware that pre-eclampsia is preventable. However, only 18% of participants reported having ever prescribed low-dose aspirin for pregnant women at high risk for pre-eclampsia. Participants reported using various drugs methyldopa, nifedipine, magnesium sulfate, and others to prevent and manage pre-eclampsia.

Conclusion: This study was done in 2018. The study identified significant knowledge gaps on pre-eclampsia prevention, low-dose aspirin prescription, and screening for pregnant women at risk for pre-eclampsia among health workers in South-western Uganda. Health workers reported using other drugs that are not recommended in the prevention of pre-eclampsia.

Published Date: 2023-10-10; Received Date: 2023-09-09