Factors influencing self-care behaviors of African Americans with heart failure: a photovoice project


Aurora St. Luke's Medical Center


OBJECTIVES: The purpose of this study was to understand the influences of heart failure (HF) self-care among low income, African Americans.

BACKGROUND: Compared to all other racial groups, African Americans have the highest risk of developing HF, coupled with high mortality and morbidity rates.

METHODS: Using the photovoice method, participants related important lifestyle factors through photography. The participants and researcher met for reflection and discussion 2 h per week for six weeks.

RESULTS: Four themes emerged: family support gives me the push I need, social interaction lifts me up, improving my mind to lift depression can improve my heart, and it is important but challenging to follow the HF diet.

CONCLUSION: The findings from this study may assist policy makers, health care professionals, patients, and support systems in understanding the complexity of engaging in HF self-care. This understanding may lead to the development of appropriate patient-centered assessments and interventions.

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