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The Relation between Health Literacy Levels of the Patients Diagnosed with Diabetes and Diabetic Foot Care Behaviors

Sümeyra Mihrap İlter, Özlem OVAYOLU, Nimet OVAYOLU


Purpose:The present study was conducted as a descriptive study to examine the relation between health literacy levels of patients diagnosed with diabetes and diabetic foot care behaviors.Method: Prior to the study, permission was received from the Ethics Committee, the institution and the patients. The universe of the study consisted of all the patients who were admitted with the diagnosis of diabetes between September and December 2019. The sampling of the study consisted of all the patients who had the inclusion criteria. The data of the study were collected by employing the Questionnaire, Health Literacy Scale and Diabetic Foot Care Scale. The possible lowest score that may be obtained from the Health Literacy Scale is 25, the highest score is 125; and a low score shows that the level of health literacy is “inadequate, problematic and weak”, whilea high score shows“adequate and very good” literacy level.As the score that is received increases, the health literacy level of the individual increases as well. The lowest score that may be received from the Diabetic Foot Care Scale is 15, and the highest score is 75. A low score shows that the foot care behaviors are “inadequate”, and a high score shows that foot care behaviors are “good”. The data were evaluated with the Student t-test, One-Way ANOVA, Kruskal Wallis, Mann Whitney U-test and Correlation Analysis.Findings: A total of62.7% of the patients were female, 44% were high school graduates, and 33.3% were between the ages of 42 and 48. A total of 54.7% of the patients had diabetesfor 6–10 years, 77.3% had diabetes diagnosis in their family members, 45.3% had malnutrition, 61.3% readthe ingredients of the foods before purchasing, and 57.3% readthe drug contents before use. The average health literacy score was determined as 92.8±11.4, and the average diabetic foot care score was 52.0±6.8. It was determined that as the health literacy levels of the patients increased, the rates of reading health-related publications also increased; and there was a positive correlation between health literacy levels and diabetic foot care behaviors of the participants (p<0.05).Result and Recommendations:The health literacy patients and the diabetic foot care behaviors of the patients were determined to be close to adequate levels. According to these results, it may be claimed that the health literacy levels, and diabetic foot care behaviors of patients must be evaluated periodically by diabetes training nurses for effective diabetes management.

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