Complementary and alternative medicine use in infertility: cultural and religious influences in a multicultural Canadian setting.

TitleComplementary and alternative medicine use in infertility: cultural and religious influences in a multicultural Canadian setting.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsRead SC, Carrier M-E, Whitley R, Gold I, Tulandi T, Zelkowitz P
JournalJ Altern Complement Med
Volume20
Issue9
Pagination686-92
Date Published2014 Sep
ISSN1557-7708
KeywordsAdult, Attitude to Health, Complementary Therapies, Culture, Emotions, Female, Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice, History, Ancient, Humans, Infertility, Interviews as Topic, Life Style, Middle Aged, Qualitative Research, Quebec, Relaxation, Religion and Medicine, Surveys and Questionnaires
Abstract

OBJECTIVES: To explore the use of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) for infertility in a multicultural healthcare setting and to compare Western and non-Western infertility patients' reasons for using CAM and the meanings they attribute to CAM use.DESIGN: Qualitative semi-structured interviews using thematic analysis.SETTINGS/LOCATION: Two infertility clinics in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.PARTICIPANTS: An ethnoculturally varied sample of 32 heterosexual infertile couples.RESULTS: CAM used included lifestyle changes (e.g., changing diet, exercise), alternative medicine (e.g., acupuncture, herbal medicines), and religious methods (e.g., prayers, religious talismans). Patients expressed three attitudes toward CAM: desperate hope, casual optimism, and amused skepticism. PARTICIPANTS' CAM use was consistent with cultural traditions of health and fertility: Westerners relied primarily on biomedicine and used CAM mainly for relaxation, whereas non-Westerners' CAM use was often influenced by culture-specific knowledge of health, illness and fertility.CONCLUSIONS: Understanding patients' CAM use may help clinicians provide culturally sensitive, patient-centered care.

DOI10.1089/acm.2013.0329
Alternate JournalJ Altern Complement Med
PubMed ID25127071
PubMed Central IDPMC4155414
Grant ListPAH103596 / / Canadian Institutes of Health Research / Canada

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