Internet addiction among social networking sites users: Emerging mental health concern among medical undergraduates of Karachi (2018)

Pak J Med Sci. 2018 Nov-Dec;34(6):1473-1477. doi: 10.12669/pjms.346.15809.

Ahmer Z1, Tanzil S2.



To determine the frequency and intensity of Internet Addiction (IA) among medical undergraduates, using Social Networking Sites (SNS), in Karachi.


A cross-sectional survey was conducted in March-June ’16 in a private and government medical college of Karachi. Self-administered, Young’s Internet Addiction Test was implemented by 340 medical students to assess the frequency and intensity of IA among SNS profile users for past three years. The structured questionnaire further enquired regarding the social and behaviour patterns relevant to IA and SNS use. Data was analyzed using SPSS 16.


Internet Addiction (IA) was found in 85% (n=289) of all study participants. Among them, 65.6% (n=223) were ‘minimally addicted’, 18.5% (n=63) were ‘moderately addicted’, whereas 0.9% (n=3) were found to be ‘severely addicted’. Burden of IA was relatively higher among female medical students as compared to male medical students (p=0.02). There was no significant difference between type of medical college attended and IA (p=0.45). However, statistically significant differences were observed in certain behavioural patterns among addicted and non-addicted medical students.


Internet Addiction (IA) is an emerging mental health concern affecting social behaviour patterns of medical undergraduates. However, the burden of IA is relatively higher among female medical students.

KEYWORDS: Internet Addiction; Medical Undergraduates; Social Networking Sites; Young’s Internet Addiction Test

PMID: 30559806

PMCID: PMC6290241

DOI: 10.12669/pjms.346.15809

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