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Patients’ experiences of lupus-related foot problems: a qualitative investigation

Patients’ experiences of lupus-related foot problems: a qualitative investigation
Patients’ experiences of lupus-related foot problems: a qualitative investigation
Background
Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) can present with a variety of symptoms. Previous research has shown there is a high prevalence of lower limb and foot problems in patients with SLE associated with the musculoskeletal, vascular and neurological changes. Furthermore, there is a high prevalence of infections affecting the feet and a range of common skin and nail problems. However, it is not known how these foot problems impact upon people’s lives. Therefore, we aimed to explore this using a qualitative approach.

Method
Following ethical approval, 12 participants were recruited who had a diagnosis of SLE, current and/or past experience of foot problems and were over 18 years in age. Following consent, interviews were carried out with an interpretivist phenomenological approach to both data collection and analysis.

Results
Seven themes provide insight into: foot problems and symptoms; the impact of these foot problems and symptoms on activities; disclosure and diagnosis of foot problems; treatment of foot problems and symptoms; perceived barriers to professional footcare; unanswered questions about feet and footcare; and identification of the need for professional footcare and footcare advice.

Conclusion
These participants tend to “self-treat” rather than disclose that they may need professional footcare. A lack of focus upon foot health within a medical consultation is attributed to the participant’s belief that it is not within the doctor’s role, even though it is noted to contribute to reduced daily activity. There is a need for feet to be included as a part of patient monitoring and for foot health management to be made accessible for people with SLE.
0961-2033
1174-1181
Williams, A.E.
aae951a7-0d89-43f0-94d0-f266c852c6d0
Blake, A.
222a82b2-f4cb-4b22-8a61-a99d84e21665
Cherry, L.
95256156-ce8c-4e7c-b04d-b6e459232441
Alcacer-Pitarch, B.
6c231206-aecf-43aa-9fad-0c881c2b1af7
Edwards, C.J.
dcb27fec-75ea-4575-a844-3588bcf14106
Hopkinson, N.
ca6fcbb9-0039-41d0-a273-99a31cc7c6f3
Vital, E.M.J.
c5278763-a084-42e9-aa3b-6a6a7ff72687
Teh, L.S.
622ee915-d7d6-4ebc-875a-1e1af5f91cec
Williams, A.E.
aae951a7-0d89-43f0-94d0-f266c852c6d0
Blake, A.
222a82b2-f4cb-4b22-8a61-a99d84e21665
Cherry, L.
95256156-ce8c-4e7c-b04d-b6e459232441
Alcacer-Pitarch, B.
6c231206-aecf-43aa-9fad-0c881c2b1af7
Edwards, C.J.
dcb27fec-75ea-4575-a844-3588bcf14106
Hopkinson, N.
ca6fcbb9-0039-41d0-a273-99a31cc7c6f3
Vital, E.M.J.
c5278763-a084-42e9-aa3b-6a6a7ff72687
Teh, L.S.
622ee915-d7d6-4ebc-875a-1e1af5f91cec

Williams, A.E., Blake, A., Cherry, L., Alcacer-Pitarch, B., Edwards, C.J., Hopkinson, N., Vital, E.M.J. and Teh, L.S. (2017) Patients’ experiences of lupus-related foot problems: a qualitative investigation. Lupus, 26 (11), 1174-1181. (doi:10.1177/0961203317696590).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Background
Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) can present with a variety of symptoms. Previous research has shown there is a high prevalence of lower limb and foot problems in patients with SLE associated with the musculoskeletal, vascular and neurological changes. Furthermore, there is a high prevalence of infections affecting the feet and a range of common skin and nail problems. However, it is not known how these foot problems impact upon people’s lives. Therefore, we aimed to explore this using a qualitative approach.

Method
Following ethical approval, 12 participants were recruited who had a diagnosis of SLE, current and/or past experience of foot problems and were over 18 years in age. Following consent, interviews were carried out with an interpretivist phenomenological approach to both data collection and analysis.

Results
Seven themes provide insight into: foot problems and symptoms; the impact of these foot problems and symptoms on activities; disclosure and diagnosis of foot problems; treatment of foot problems and symptoms; perceived barriers to professional footcare; unanswered questions about feet and footcare; and identification of the need for professional footcare and footcare advice.

Conclusion
These participants tend to “self-treat” rather than disclose that they may need professional footcare. A lack of focus upon foot health within a medical consultation is attributed to the participant’s belief that it is not within the doctor’s role, even though it is noted to contribute to reduced daily activity. There is a need for feet to be included as a part of patient monitoring and for foot health management to be made accessible for people with SLE.

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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 1 February 2017
e-pub ahead of print date: 9 March 2017
Published date: 1 October 2017

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 436136
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/436136
ISSN: 0961-2033
PURE UUID: febc2174-6d9c-4aa5-b81b-643b83439092
ORCID for L. Cherry: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-3165-1004

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 29 Nov 2019 17:30
Last modified: 10 Nov 2021 03:19

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Contributors

Author: A.E. Williams
Author: A. Blake
Author: L. Cherry ORCID iD
Author: B. Alcacer-Pitarch
Author: C.J. Edwards
Author: N. Hopkinson
Author: E.M.J. Vital
Author: L.S. Teh

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