Patients’ experiences of lupus related foot problems : a qualitative investigation

Williams, AE ORCID:, Blake, A, Cherry, L, Alcacer-Pitarch, B, Edwards, C, Hopkinson, N, Vital, EM and Teh, LS 2017, 'Patients’ experiences of lupus related foot problems : a qualitative investigation' , Lupus, 26 (11) , pp. 1174-1181.

PDF (Author's accepted manuscript) - Accepted Version
Download (605kB) | Preview


Background: Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) can present with a variety of symptoms. Previous research has shown there is a high prevalence of lower limb and foot problems in patients with SLE associated with the musculoskeletal, vascular and neurological changes. Furthermore, there is a high prevalence of infections affecting the feet and a range of common skin and nail problems. However, it is not known how these foot problems impact upon people’s lives. Therefore, we aimed to explore this using a qualitative approach.
Method: Following ethical approval, 12 participants were recruited who had a diagnosis of SLE, current and/or past experience of foot problems and were over 18 years in age. Following consent, interviews were carried out with an interpretivist phenomenological approach to both data collection and analysis.
Results: Seven themes provide insight into: foot problems and symptoms; the impact of these foot problems and symptoms on activities; disclosure and diagnosis of foot problems; treatment of foot problems and symptoms; perceived barriers to professional foot care; unanswered questions about feet and foot care; and identification of the need for professional foot care and foot care advice.
Conclusion: These participants tend to “self-treat” rather than disclose that they may need professional foot care. A lack of focus upon foot health within a medical consultation is attributed to the participant’s belief that it is not within the doctor’s role, even though it is noted to contribute to reduced daily activity. There is a need for feet to be included as a part of patient monitoring and for foot health management to be made accessible for people with SLE.

Item Type: Article
Schools: Schools > School of Health and Society > Centre for Health Sciences Research
Journal or Publication Title: Lupus
Publisher: Sage Publications
ISSN: 0961-2033
Related URLs:
Funders: Logres trust
Depositing User: Dr Anita E Williams
Date Deposited: 01 Sep 2017 12:37
Last Modified: 15 Feb 2022 22:24

Actions (login required)

Edit record (repository staff only) Edit record (repository staff only)


Downloads per month over past year