Patient voice: appreciative inquiry into living well with diabetes

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University of New Brunswick


This study explores the question "What factors contribute to successful self-management of chronic disease/diabetes from the patients' perspective?" It analyses individual interviews with 13 adults with diabetes about living well with diabetes, and their dreams of enhanced conditions for successful self-management of diabetes. The study has two assumptions: 1) patients have unique, particular, and holistic knowledge of their health and self-management practices, 2) Appreciative Inquiry locates and enhances the positive and life-giving forces in individuals and systems. Appreciative Inquiry is thus seen as an appropriate methodology to use in the discovery of the positive, life-giving attitudes, actions, and dreams of the participants. Thematic Analysis of the interview data identifies that positive personal qualities, reciprocal interpersonal support, and experiential expertise are three themes which interact and enable participants to live well with diabetes. Frank's illness narrative theory is used to frame the quest narrative manifest in the overarching theme, simultaneously embracing diabetes management and life.