Blood Sugar and Brothers' Voices: An Exploratory Study Of The Self-Care Management Experiences of African-American Men Living With Type 2 Diabetes Thesis uri icon


  • Self-care is the key to living a long and healthy life for people with diabetes. Yet numerous studies show that self-care is far from optimal. This has resulted in attempts to understand the progress underlying self-care behavior in the efforts of mediating more effectively. While there are an abundance of studies focusing on African-American women and diabetes management, there is a considerable gap in health education literature regarding the self-care management experiences of African-American men living with type 2 diabetes. The management and impact of type 2 diabetes on the sense of self, lifestyle, and significant others of the African-American man are not clearly comprehended. Therefore, the purpose of the study was to explore the knowledge, beliefs, and self-care management practices of African American men living with type 2 diabetes. This was an exploratory study utilizing qualitative methodology to understand the knowledge, beliefs, and existing self-care management practices of up to 50 African-American men, ages 18-70, living with type 2 diabetes. Participants had one-on-one semi structured interviews with the primary investigator. The instruments that were used consisted of two parts: one was a self-administered paper/pencil questionnaire to collect socio-demographic information. The second was a semi-structured interview. The study significance was to identify and understand the barriers to type 2 diabetes management and how they had an adverse influence on self-care. A combination of high barriers, poor daily self-care, management, and knowledge possibly put those with type 2 diabetes at an elevated risk for subordinate self-care management. Barriers had a role in reality and diabetes researchers and educators are charged with recognizing the complications of what individuals with type 2 diabetes need to do improve and enhance their health. The study findings revealed that the participants labored with managing their diabetes and some counted on their own potential or performance, as well as the encouragement of their family, extended family, neighbors, and friends. Also, many of the participants had a unified theme in that regarding self-care management, having type 2 diabetes affected those in their surrounding environment, not just the person living with the illness. In conclusion, the study findings suggest that future diabetes research and education among African-American men should give attention to male masculinity and the powerful influence it has on utilizing preventive health services. The limited amount of African-American men included in empirical type 2 diabetes research could help explain the under addressed barriers and complexities to positive self-care management.

author list (cited authors)

  • Sherman, L. D.

complete list of authors

  • Sherman, Ledric D

publication date

  • July 2013