Objective: To explore lived experiences of a diverse group of Muslim American women in managing type 2 diabetes in the US.

Methods: We conducted a one hour one-on-one qualitative interview with first generation immigrant or refugee Muslim American women. Interviews were conducted in-person or via phone, and were audio recorded. Interpretation services were provided for participants who speak Dari, Rohingya, and Urdu. The interviewer speaks Arabic and English, so no interpretation was needed for these interviews. Two trained researchers conducted inductive thematic analysis using NVivo.

Results: A total of 13 women who come from 6 different countries in the Middle East (Palestine, Egypt) and Asia (Afghanistan, India, Pakistan, Burma) were interviewed. Mean age was 58 years, only three women had a college education or higher, and 11 women had an income < $25,000. Results are presented in Figure 1. Themes include: 1) Patient-provider communication; 2) Factors influencing exercising; 3) Access to care. The third theme was common within the two refugee groups (Rohingya and Afghan).

Conclusion: This research presents experiences and preferences for Muslim women who come from diverse cultures. Clinicians and researchers need to understand and respond to these preferences while not judging patients for their preferences. A patient-centered approach is important to help women achieve better health outcomes and overall quality of life.


A. Ali: None. B.A. Chewning: None.


Health Resources and Services Administration (T32HP10010); Department of Family Medicine and Community Health

Readers may use this article as long as the work is properly cited, the use is educational and not for profit, and the work is not altered. More information is available at http://www.diabetesjournals.org/content/license.