Ha Na Jeong, Kyoung-eun Lee, Hee Jung Kim, Gi Won Choi, Sun Ju Chang

Silent struggles to self-manage high blood pressure among deaf sign language users: a qualitative study

  • Advanced and Specialized Nursing
  • Medical–Surgical Nursing
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

Abstract Aims Tailored self-management support of hypertension, considering language and communication, is important for minorities, specifically in the deaf community. However, little is known about the experiences of hypertension self-management in deaf individuals who use sign language. This study aimed to explore the factors and processes of self-management in deaf sign language users with hypertension. Methods and results Ten men and women who used sign language participated in this study. Data were collected using in-depth personal interviews conducted in the presence of a sign language interpreter between November 2022 and February 2023. All interviews were recorded and transcribed for conventional content analysis. Qualitative analyses identified four categories related to the self-management of hypertension among participants: personal factors (chronic hand pain, unique language and communication, and efforts to turn crisis into opportunities), family and socioeconomic factors (family support and financial burden of living), challenges (limited health literacy and alienation from health education), and desire for health education considering the deaf community. Conclusion The results of this study suggest that family support, socioeconomic status, hand pain, and health literacy should be considered for the planning and development of health education on self-management of hypertension in deaf individuals. In addition, this health education requires cooperation with qualified sign language interpreters in healthcare settings.

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