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Exploring the meaning of hypoglycaemia to community-dwelling Singaporean Chinese adults living with type 2 diabetes mellitus

Authors

  • Pamela Shu-Xian Tan BSc (Nurs) (Hons) RN,

    Corresponding author
    1. Honours Student, National University Hospital Collaborating Centre, Alice Lee Centre for Nursing Studies, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore, Singapore
      Shu-Xian Pamela Tan, Singapore National University Hospital (NUH), Block MD11, Clinical Research Centre, Level 2, 10 Medical Drive, 117597 Singapore. Email: pamelatan.pt@gmail.com
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  • Hui-Chen Chen MSN BSN RN,

    1. Lecturer, National University Hospital Collaborating Centre, Alice Lee Centre for Nursing Studies, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore, Singapore
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  • Beverley Joan Taylor PhD MEd RN RM,

    1. Visiting Professor of Nursing, National University Hospital Collaborating Centre, Alice Lee Centre for Nursing Studies, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore, Singapore
    2. Professor of Nursing, Faulty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Monash University Gippsland Campus, Churchill, Victoria, Australia
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  • Desley Gail Hegney PhD BA (Hons) DNE COHN CNNN RN RM

    1. Professor and Director of Research, National University Hospital Collaborating Centre, Alice Lee Centre for Nursing Studies, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore, Singapore
    2. Professor of Nursing, Curtin University, Curtin Health Innovation Research Institute, Perth, Western Australia, Australia
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Shu-Xian Pamela Tan, Singapore National University Hospital (NUH), Block MD11, Clinical Research Centre, Level 2, 10 Medical Drive, 117597 Singapore. Email: pamelatan.pt@gmail.com

Abstract

Tan PS-X, Chen H-C, Taylor BJ, Hegney DG. International Journal of Nursing Practice 2012; 18: 252–259

Exploring the meaning of hypoglycaemia to community-dwelling Singaporean Chinese adults living with type 2 diabetes mellitus

This study aimed to explore how community-dwelling Singaporean Chinese adults diagnosed with type 2 diabetes mellitus experience hypoglycaemia. A qualitative interpretive research design was employed. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with six participants from a Singaporean diabetes specialist outpatient clinic, transcribed verbatim and analysed using qualitative manual thematic analysis. Eight major themes emerged: experiencing symptoms, knowing hypoglycaemia is manageable, using acute measures, using preventative strategies; applying knowledge, identifying causes of hypoglycaemia, forming relationships and working with health-care professionals. Participants underestimated the impact of hypoglycaemia mainly due to their experiencing mild and infrequent episodes, and knowledge deficits. Health-care professionals' roles were limited to information providers, and they were perceived as detached and impersonal. Theimplications are that health-care professionals need to provide more client-focused education, and improve the quality of their interpersonal relationships to ensure shared decision-making with their clients.

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