Original Article | Volume 18: 72 | 18 Dec 2023

Perceptions and practices of self-management among adult patients with gout at a primary care clinic: A qualitative study

ABSTRACT

Introduction: Gout is a chronic disease commonly associated with other comorbidities. Patients’ perceived quality of life empowers them in managing their health. Self-management is imparted as part of management among patients with chronic disease. This study aimed to explore the perceptions and practices of self-management among patients with gout from different ethnic groups in Malaysia.
Methods: A qualitative study was conducted among Malay, Chinese and Indian patients with gout via semi-structured in-depth interviews at the primary care clinic of University Malaya Medical Centre in either English or Malay language. All participants had a gout duration of more than 6 months and were either taking urate-lowering drugs or not using them at all.
Results: A total of 20 participants were successfully recruited for the study. Among the participants, 18 were men, while two were women. Further, nine were Malays; six, Chinese; and four, Indians. The age ranged from 29 to 81 years, while the gout duration ranged from 1 to 30 years. From the interviews, three themes emerged: experiences with gout, types of self-management of gout and factors influencing self-management of gout.
Conclusion: Diet control is the main self-management practice of patients with gout. Traditional medicine practices include natural methods such as consumption of different types of vegetable juices, pineapple and papaya. Each ethnicity has its own unique beliefs and food cultures. By understanding the self-management practices of patients from diverse ethnic backgrounds, healthcare practitioners can tailor the treatment of gout to individual needs.

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