Description: Diabetes has alarming prevalence rates not only in the U.S., but also worldwide. Ethnicity plays a large role with Hispanic-Americans having one of the highest prevalence rates. Diabetes is a complicated disease that requires significant lifestyle modifications. The health belief model (HBM) has been investigated as a theory to explain behavior change. However, little research has been done to determine its utility to Mexican-Americans. In the current study, participants were Mexican-American adults (N = 66) with type II diabetes who were recruited from family medicine clinics. Self-report questionnaires included the General Acculturation Index (GAI) and the Multidimensional Diabetes Questionnaire (MDQ). Participants had the option to complete them in either Spanish or English. Laboratory values were collected from medical charts. A MANCOVA indicated that two variables were significant, perceived severity (PS) and misguided support behaviors (MSB), p < .05. With respect to the HBM, PS was identified as a component of an individual's perception, acculturation was a modifying factor, and MSB was a component of the likelihood to change factors. These three affected glycemic control. Odds ratios determined that individuals with better glycemic control had less perceived severity and less misguided supportive behavior. Individuals with the least acculturation were more likely to have best glycemic control. Significant results were found for each of the three main columns of the model suggesting that the HBM has utility for the Hispanic-American population with type II diabetes. Results suggest that health care personnel should be aware of the ramifications of patients' perceived severity of their illness as well as the amount the "nagging" type support they receive from friends and family on glycemic control. This awareness can lead to the development of interventions aimed at improving glycemic control and the quality of life in Mexican-Americans with diabetes. Specifically, programs focused on incorporating the family ...
Date: August 2007
Creator: Bereolos, Nicole Margaret
Partner: UNT Libraries