Abstract: Foot-related disease is the most common cause of hospital admissions among the diabetic population. Diabetic foot ulcer-related morbidity could be ultimately prevented by positive patientsâ€™ interpretation of peripheral neuropathy and active engagement in foot self-care.
Objective: To identify the association between patient interpretation of diabetic peripheral neuropathy and foot self-care behaviors.
Methods: A convenience sample of 121 adult diabetic patients with either type I or II diabetes were recruited from diabetic clinic at Gamal Abdel Nasar Hospital in Alexandria, Egypt. Four tools were used in the research study (Bio Sociodemographic Sheet, Modified Neuropathy Disability Score, Patient Interpretation Neuropathy (PIN) Questionnaire, and Foot Self-Care Behaviors Questionnaire).
Results: More than a third of patients have moderate peripheral neuropathy. Patients with no past history of foot ulcer obtained higher mean score of illness identity and causes. These differences were found to be highly statistically significant. The severity of peripheral neuropathy greatly affected patientsâ€™ interpretation of peripheral neuropathy. The findings also indicated that there are significant differences between patientsâ€™ foot self-care behaviors and their interpretation of peripheral neuropathy. Patients who have adequate foot self-care obtained higher mean score than those with inadequate foot self-care behaviors related to all items of peripheral neuropathy interpretations except items related to illness identity and causes.
Conclusion: The results highlight the importance of assessment and understanding patientsâ€™ interpretation of peripheral neuropathy to promote foot self-care behavior and prevent diabetic foot complications