Self-management of gestational diabetes among Chinese migrants: A qualitative study.


Faculty of Pharmacy, The University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia. Electronic address: [Email]


BACKGROUND : Gestational diabetes mellitus is one of the most common complications of pregnancy. Women with Gestational diabetes are at increased risk of serious health outcomes, such as pre-eclampsia, obstructed labor, and the development of Type 2 diabetes later in life. Chinese migrants, the third largest cultural group in Australia, are more likely to develop Gestational diabetes than Australian-born women. However, to date, Gestational diabetes self-management has not been investigated in this population.
OBJECTIVE : To explore the understanding and self-management experiences of Gestational diabetes among Chinese migrants.
METHODS : Data were collected through individual semi-structured face-to-face interviews. Participants were recruited from the antenatal clinic at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital. Interviews were audio-recorded, transcribed verbatim and thematically analyzed.
RESULTS : Although the majority of participants demonstrated a good understanding of Gestational diabetes, some did not understand the principles behind healthcare advice and faced challenges in self-management. Confusion about self-monitoring of blood glucose and fear of insulin were also evident. Participants relied on both formal and informal sources of information. Some had difficulty obtaining adequate support. Cultural influences on self-management included meeting family needs, Chinese diet and use of Chinese medicines.
CONCLUSIONS : To assist Chinese women with Gestational diabetes to better self-manage their condition, there is a need for clinicians to: (1) provide more effective diabetes education to ensure clear understanding of self-management principles; (2) actively elicit and respond to women's confusion and concerns; (3) provide women with adequate practical support; and (4) develop greater cultural awareness.


Chinese,Gestational diabetes,Knowledge,Self-management,Women,

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