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Abstract

Hemorrhoids or piles, culturally known as Jedijedi among the people of southwestern Nigeria, are an anorectal disease surrounded by misconceptions. The consequences of these misconceptions are enormous. Therefore, the main objective of the present study is to understand the sociocultural explanation of piles among selected personnel of the Nigeria Police Force. We recruited 302 police officers for the exploratory survey through a multistage sampling technique. Five key informants were interviewed at the study area based upon their professions and proximity. Data interpretation was done through chi-square and content analysis. Results indicated a high prevalence (73%) of and misconceptions about hemorrhoids among the respondents. The majority (80%) of the respondents had a poor awareness of the risk factors, making a scientifically unfounded claim that sugar intake was responsible for piles. Their belief negatively influenced the treatments adopted. Furthermore, their choice of therapy was influenced by its affordability (p < .05) and the fear of hemorrhoidectomy (p < .05). The study established various misconceptions about hemorrhoids among herbal vendors and police officers, which influenced treatment choices. The study suggested that one potent tool for combating ignorance about the disease is sensitization, which will equip officers to adopt healthier behaviors and aid herbal vendors to give better treatment to their clients. In addition, experimental platforms should be set for herbal vendors and orthodox medical practitioners to form a synergy in combating the diseases.

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