Understanding the Perceptions Surrounding Pelvic Floor Disorders within Arab American Communities



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Objective: The aim of the study was to collect more data about the perceptions surrounding Pelvic Floor Disorders (PFDs) within Arab American Communities to produce culturally sensitive materials that may be used in the healthcare field. Methods: We utilized the qualitative research strategy of conducting one-on-one interviews with women of different Middle Eastern backgrounds. The participants were asked about their perceptions and asked to comment on two informational fliers. The interviews were then transcribed and compiled to be analyzed using a code book to account for major themes. Results: A total of 20 women were included from different Middle Eastern backgrounds including: Egyptian, Palestinian, and Iraqi women. 35% of the participants reported having issues with PFDs with 57% of them being over the age of 45 and 42% being under the age of 45. The bulk of the participants, 65%, did not report having any issues with PFDs. The groups differed with factors such as age, nation of origin, income, English literacy, and years lived in the United States. Data seemed to emerge mostly along the lines of age and years spent in the US with the conservative culture influencing older age groups and persons who have spent less time in America. Conclusion: The data suggests that women with PFDs in the Arab American community have significantly more concrete knowledge and perceptions surrounding PFDs. Women who did not experience a PFD had minimal to no knowledge surrounding these disorders including some women who were health professionals.