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Patients’ understanding of cellulitis and their information needs: a mixed-methods study in primary and secondary care

Patients’ understanding of cellulitis and their information needs: a mixed-methods study in primary and secondary care
Patients’ understanding of cellulitis and their information needs: a mixed-methods study in primary and secondary care
Background Cellulitis is a painful infection of the skin and underlying tissues, commonly affecting the lower leg. Approximately one-third of people experience recurrence. Patients’ ability to recover from cellulitis or prevent recurrence is likely to be influenced by their understanding of the condition.

Aim To explore patients’ perceptions of cellulitis, and their information needs.

Design and setting Mixed-methods study comprising semi-structured, face-to-face interviews and a cross-sectional survey, recruiting through primary and secondary care, and advertising.

Method Adults aged ≥18 years with a history of cellulitis were invited to take part in a survey, qualitative interview, or both.

Results In all, 30 interviews were conducted between August 2016 and July 2017. Qualitative data highlighted a low awareness of cellulitis before the first episode, uncertainty about when it had been diagnosed, concern/surprise at the severity of cellulitis, and a perceived insufficient information provision. People were surprised that they had never heard of cellulitis and that they had not received advice or leaflets giving self-care information. Some sought information from the internet and found this confusing.

A total of 240 surveys were completed (response rate 17%). These showed that, although many participants had received information on the treatment of cellulitis (60.0%, n = 144), they often reported receiving no information about causes (60.8%, n = 146) or prevention of recurrence (73.3%, n = 176).

Conclusion There is a need to provide information for people with cellulitis, particularly in regard to naming their condition, the management of acute episodes, and how to reduce the risk of recurrences.
0960-1643
Teasdale, Emma
f156de5f-e83e-40c0-aafa-0c95dd17aa80
Lalonde, Anna
bff04007-3f32-4231-9cef-cf7d7675f5e3
Muller, Ingrid
2569bf42-51bd-40da-bbfd-dd4dbbd62cad
Chalmers, Joanne
c135c48d-5b38-4554-9d3e-e4b8242ac10a
Smart, Peter
fddd022d-7985-4657-8682-2b51e0cbc11c
Hooper, Julie
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El-Gohary, Magdy
392c5e6d-a761-4577-967f-2f36054aa653
Thomas, Kim S.
39654459-5700-4a09-9409-a19b14ba7b6b
Santer, Miriam
3ce7e832-31eb-4d27-9876-3a1cd7f381dc
Teasdale, Emma
f156de5f-e83e-40c0-aafa-0c95dd17aa80
Lalonde, Anna
bff04007-3f32-4231-9cef-cf7d7675f5e3
Muller, Ingrid
2569bf42-51bd-40da-bbfd-dd4dbbd62cad
Chalmers, Joanne
c135c48d-5b38-4554-9d3e-e4b8242ac10a
Smart, Peter
fddd022d-7985-4657-8682-2b51e0cbc11c
Hooper, Julie
45d8565c-aacc-433e-8bb4-1d06d3113ed4
El-Gohary, Magdy
392c5e6d-a761-4577-967f-2f36054aa653
Thomas, Kim S.
39654459-5700-4a09-9409-a19b14ba7b6b
Santer, Miriam
3ce7e832-31eb-4d27-9876-3a1cd7f381dc

Teasdale, Emma, Lalonde, Anna, Muller, Ingrid, Chalmers, Joanne, Smart, Peter, Hooper, Julie, El-Gohary, Magdy, Thomas, Kim S. and Santer, Miriam (2019) Patients’ understanding of cellulitis and their information needs: a mixed-methods study in primary and secondary care. British Journal of General Practice. (doi:10.3399/bjgp19X701873).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Background Cellulitis is a painful infection of the skin and underlying tissues, commonly affecting the lower leg. Approximately one-third of people experience recurrence. Patients’ ability to recover from cellulitis or prevent recurrence is likely to be influenced by their understanding of the condition.

Aim To explore patients’ perceptions of cellulitis, and their information needs.

Design and setting Mixed-methods study comprising semi-structured, face-to-face interviews and a cross-sectional survey, recruiting through primary and secondary care, and advertising.

Method Adults aged ≥18 years with a history of cellulitis were invited to take part in a survey, qualitative interview, or both.

Results In all, 30 interviews were conducted between August 2016 and July 2017. Qualitative data highlighted a low awareness of cellulitis before the first episode, uncertainty about when it had been diagnosed, concern/surprise at the severity of cellulitis, and a perceived insufficient information provision. People were surprised that they had never heard of cellulitis and that they had not received advice or leaflets giving self-care information. Some sought information from the internet and found this confusing.

A total of 240 surveys were completed (response rate 17%). These showed that, although many participants had received information on the treatment of cellulitis (60.0%, n = 144), they often reported receiving no information about causes (60.8%, n = 146) or prevention of recurrence (73.3%, n = 176).

Conclusion There is a need to provide information for people with cellulitis, particularly in regard to naming their condition, the management of acute episodes, and how to reduce the risk of recurrences.

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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 14 October 2018
e-pub ahead of print date: 11 March 2019

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 425911
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/425911
ISSN: 0960-1643
PURE UUID: c4e69023-dc5c-4e14-95f1-0f10a91782f2
ORCID for Miriam Santer: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-7264-5260

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Date deposited: 06 Nov 2018 17:30
Last modified: 29 Mar 2019 01:32

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