Navigation Links
CWRU study finds the love of a dog or cat helps women cope with HIV/AIDS
Date:1/23/2012

A spoonful of medicine goes down a lot easier if there is a dog or cat around. Having pets is helpful for women living with HIV/AIDS and managing their chronic illness, according to a new study from the Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing at Case Western Reserve University.

"We think this finding about pets can apply to women managing other chronic illnesses," said Allison R. Webel, instructor of nursing and lead author of the article, "The Relationship Between Social Roles and Self-Management Behavior in Women Living with HIV/AIDS," which appears in the online journal Women's Health Issues.

Webel set out to better understand how women manage their HIV/AIDS and stay on track to take their medications, follow doctors' orders and live healthy lifestyles. She conducted 12 focus groups with 48 women to find out what they did to stay healthy. The women had an average age of 42, about 90 percent had children, and more than half were single.

During the focus groups, six predominant social roles emerged that helped and hindered these women in managing their illness: pet owner, mother/grandmother, faith believer, advocate, stigmatized patient, and employee. All roles had a positive impact except stigmatized patient, which prevented women from revealing their illness and seeking out appropriate supports.

"Much information is available about the impact of work and family roles, but little is known about other social roles that women assume," Webel said.

Being a pet owner was an important surprise, added Webel, who collaborated with co-author Patricia Higgins, a professor of nursing at Case Western Reserve University.

"Petsprimarily dogsgave these women a sense of support and pleasure," Webel said.

When discussing the effect their pets have on their lives, the women weighed in. "She's going to be right there when I'm hurting," a cat owner said. Another said: "Dogs know when you're in a bad moodshe knows that I'm sick, and everywhere I go, she goes. She wants to protect me."

The human and animal bond in healing and therapy is being recognized, Webel said, as more animals are visiting nursing homes to connect to people with dementia or hospitals to visit children with long hospital stays.

Being a pet owner is just one social aspect of these women's lives. "We found the social context in which this self-management happens is important," Webel said.

Another strong role to emerge was advocate. Participants wanted to give back and help stop others from engaging in activities that might make them sick, the researchers report.

While roles as mothers and workers are well documented, "less-defined social roles also have a positive impact on self-management of their chronic illness," Webel said.


'/>"/>

Contact: Susan Griffith
susan.griffith@case.edu
216-368-1004
Case Western Reserve University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. BU study finds new genetic loci associated with menopause onset
2. New study sheds light on evolutionary origin of oxygen-based cellular respiration
3. Mysterious flotsam in Gulf of Mexico came from Deepwater Horizon rig, WHOI study finds
4. UF study: Rules may govern genome evolution in young plant species
5. Study: Quebec ban on fast-food ads reduced consumption of junk food
6. Study: Communicating health risk is a risky task for FDA
7. NEI awards new grant to study the biological origins of eye allergies
8. Some breast cancer spread may be triggered by a protein, study shows
9. NIH study shows 32 million Americans have autoantibodies that target their own tissues
10. NASA study shows health, food security benefits from climate change actions
11. Study establishes importance of tracking diseases associated with illegal wildlife trade
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/15/2016)... Yissum Research Development Company of the Hebrew University ... University, announced today the formation of Neteera Technologies ... biological indicators. Neteera Technologies has completed its first round ... Neteera,s ... from sweat ducts, enables reliable and speedy biometric identification, ...
(Date:3/10/2016)... -- --> --> ... Access Management Market by Component (Provisioning, Directory Services, Password ... Size, by Deployment, by Vertical, and by Region - ... is estimated to grow from USD 7.20 Billion in ... Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 12.2% during the ...
(Date:3/8/2016)... 2016   Valencell , the leading innovator ... has secured $11M in Series D financing. The ... venture fund being launched by UAE-based financial services ... investors TDF Ventures and WSJ Joshua Fund. Valencell ... triple-digit growth and accelerate its pioneering innovation in ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/29/2016)... ... 29, 2016 , ... Amendia, Inc., a leading designer, developer, ... the completion of a significant transaction and partnership that positions Amendia for accelerated ... Kohlberg & Company, L.L.C. (“Kohlberg”), a leading private equity firm specializing in ...
(Date:4/29/2016)... , ... April 29, 2016 , ... Intelligent Implant Systems ... the FDA via 510(k) for sale in the United States. These components expand ... thoraco-lumbar fusions. With one-level sales beginning in October of 2015, the company has ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... ... 28, 2016 , ... Connecticut Innovations (CI), the ... announced the launch of VentureClash , a $5 million global investment challenge ... looks to attract the best early-stage companies here in Connecticut, around the country ...
(Date:4/27/2016)... ... April 27, 2016 , ... Cambridge Semantics, ... web technology, today announced that it has been named to The Silicon Review’s “20 ... services and other markets, Cambridge Semantics serves the needs of end users facing some ...
Breaking Biology Technology: