Self-management Experiences Among Men and Women With Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus

A Qualitative Analysis

Rebecca Mathew; Enza Gucciardi; Margaret De Melo; Paula Barata


BMC Fam Pract. 2012;13(122) 

In This Article


Our findings allowed us to develop a more comprehensive understanding of the self-management experiences, needs, challenges and barriers among men and women with diabetes. As the Canadian population ages, and diabetes affects an increasingly proportion of the population, patient empowerment and involvement in diabetes management will become even more crucial. This study will inform healthcare practice and counseling by illuminating the complex factors of gender differences. Our study found five overarching themes which represented differences in diabetes self-care among men and women: The five overarching themes identified were: increased self-identification and disclosure as a person living with diabetes among women, differences in attitudes towards and practical aspects of self-monitoring of blood glucose levels, increased struggles with diet and nutrition among women, utilization of more independent diabetes resources among men, and variations in included members among social support networks between men and women. As knowledge regarding differences among men and women and their management experience and needs increase gender-sensitive healthcare interventions can be better directed to improve self-management among women and men living with diabetes.