Gout Self-Management in African American Veterans: A Qualitative Exploration of Challenges and Solutions From Patients' Perspectives

Jasvinder A. Singh, Ivan Herbey, Aseem Bharat, Janet E. Dinnella, Sally Pullman-Mooar, Seth Eisen, Nataliya Ivankova

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: To explore gout self-management and associated challenges and solutions in African Americans. Methods: We conducted semistructured interviews with 35 African American veterans with gout, who received health care at Birmingham or Philadelphia Veterans Affairs (VA) medical centers, had filled urate-lowering therapy (ULT; most commonly allopurinol) for at least 6 months, and had a ULT medication possession ratio ≥80%. The interview protocol was constructed to explore key concepts related to gout self-management, including initial diagnosis of gout, beginning medical care for gout, the course of the gout, ULT medication adherence, dietary strategies, comorbidity and side effects, and social support. Results: Thirty-five African American male veterans with gout who had ≥80% ULT adherence (most commonly, allopurinol) were interviewed at Birmingham (n = 18) or Philadelphia (n = 17) VA medical centers. Mean age was 65 years, mean body mass index was 31.9 kg/m2, 97% had hypertension, 23% had coronary artery disease, and 31% had renal failure. The main themes motivating African American veterans to better gout self-management were fear of pain, adherence to medications, self-discipline, lifestyle changes, information gathering, and developing a positive outlook. Birmingham participants more frequently revealed skipping gout medications. More Philadelphia participants discussed lifestyle/diet changes to prevent gout flares, indicated limiting social activities that involved drinking, and sought more information about gout self-management from health care providers and internet sources. Conclusion: Identified themes, including cultural differences by site, led to the development of a patient-centered intervention to improve gout self-management in African American men with gout.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1724-1732
Number of pages9
JournalArthritis Care and Research
Volume69
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2017

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