A Cross-Sectional Study of the Knowledge, Practice,… Leave a comment

Introduction Herpes zoster (HZ) is a viral infection that occurs due to the reactivation of the varicella-zoster virus. The vaccination against herpes zoster to prevent its complications has been approved for individuals 50 years of age and older. This study aims to evaluate the knowledge, attitudes, and habits of at-risk populations about the varicella-zoster virus and its vaccination. Methodology A quantitative, observational, cross-sectional study was conducted among 500 adults over 50 years of age. Participants were selected by non-probability, convenience sampling from public places. RStudio (R version 4.1.1) was used to analyze the data. Result Eighty-three percent (n = 416) of participants had heard of herpes zoster (HZ). Seventy-four percent of respondents (n = 368) did not recognize the link between varicella and herpes zoster. Multiple linear regression showed that individuals who had varicella and heard about herpes zoster were the only positive predictors of herpes zoster knowledge. Out of all the respondents, 55.8% (n = 279) had heard of the herpes zoster vaccine, but 94.6% (n = 473) had not taken it. Among the respondents, 28.1% (n = 118) were unwilling to take optional vaccines; 77.4% (n = 387) agreed to take the HZ vaccine if recommended by a healthcare professional. Conclusion The general Saudi population had a good understanding of HZ and its vaccine. Their attitudes toward the HZ vaccine were generally positive; however, poor practices were observed. We recommend that arranging national campaigns targeting at-risk populations can enhance awareness about herpes zoster and its vaccine, subsequently increasing the rate of HZ immunization.


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