Obesity has arisen as a major cause of morbidity and mortality in today' s society. The aim of this study was to assess potential barriers encountered by obese women seeking medical care. It was hypothesized that overweight or obese women will be likely to have a negative self-esteem and that a negative self-esteem associated with being overweight will decrease healthcare utilization. A convenience sample of 50 women over the age of 18 were surveyed upon entering a health care clinic. Self-report of height and weight was collected to calculate a body mass index (BMI) score. Furthermore, a self-report of healthcare utilization was obtained along with demographic data and a quantified self-esteem score. Results showed a significant Pearson's negative correlation between BMI and the self-esteem score (r = -0.395; p = 0.01) and a significant difference based on a t-test between self-esteem based on employment status ( p = 0.021). Other demographic variables (age, income, education, marital status, and race) had no significant impact on BMI, self-esteem or number of office visits. There was no significant difference between obese and non-obese women on the number or type of office visits, and no significant difference between average self-esteem score and number of medical office visits. Assessing self-esteem in those with higher BMIs may be a helpful tool in assisting providers to identify barriers of seeking healthcare in obese women.
|Commitee:||Jadalla, Ahlam, Woods, William|
|School:||California State University, Long Beach|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||MAI 51/05M(E), Masters Abstracts International|
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