Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School

Graduate Nursing


The purpose of this study was fourfold: (1) to identify the knowledge level of elderly rural residents concerning the safety, efficacy, and quality of herbal medicine; (2) to determine how many elderly rural residents are using herbs; (3) to identify if herbal medicine users disclose their use to their healthcare provider; and ( 4) to determine if a relationship exists among elderly rural residents, demographic characteristics, knowledge level, likelihood of self-disclosure, and use of herbal medicine. This study was a descriptive correlational design. The sample was elderly males and females residing in southwestern Minnesota who were members of their local senior citizen center. The significance of this study was related to the fact that herbal medicine use in the United States has increased over the past ten years. The safety, efficacy, and quality of herbs are not well-known and the Food and Drug Administration does not regulate them. The elderly population is at greater risk for herbal medicine and drug interactions. Educational programs are needed to educate the elderly population about the safety, efficacy, and quality of herbal medicines.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Herbs -- Therapeutic use
Rural older people -- Drug use



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University