Perceptions of Insulin Treatment Among African Americans With Uncontrolled Type 2 Diabetes

Denise Bockwoldt, Beth A. Staffileno, Lola Coke, Lauretta Quinn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Purpose: Little is known regarding perception of insulin treatment among midlife and older African American (AA) adults with type 2 diabetes, or how perception affects self-management behaviors. Using the Roy adaptation model, this qualitative descriptive study explored the perception of insulin treatment in midlife and older AAs living with uncontrolled type 2 diabetes. Method: Three 1-hour focus groups were conducted with a total of 13 participants. Thematic analysis of transcribed audio recordings used the constant comparative method. Results: Themes identified include (a) insulin as instigator of negative emotions, (b) adapting to a lifestyle with insulin, and (c) becoming an insulin user: a new identity. Conclusion: Adapting to insulin is a psychosocial process that commonly results in negative emotions, identity conflict, and new roles. Implications for practice: Further research is needed to understand how AA adults perceive insulin treatment, understand the role of perception in self-management behaviors, and determine whether interventions to change perceptions may be effective in improving adaptation to diabetes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)172-180
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Transcultural Nursing
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • clinical areas
  • diabetes
  • focus group analysis
  • health disparities
  • research methods

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Nursing


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