US South Asian more unwilling to treat pain than other counterparts

Colombia, July 25 : Researchers have found that health care providers perceive that South Asians living in the United States are more reluctant than other ethnicities to report pain as well as seek medications for it.

University of Missouri researchers said that the finding provides an opportunity for health care professionals to deliver better culturally responsive care to South Asian patients and their families.

Researcher Karla Washington said that in future years, health care workers in the United States would provide care to an increasingly diverse group of patients which will include growing numbers of South Asians.

Washington added that it was important to understand the cultural differences in medical practice in South Asia, such as their low use of pain medication.

Washington and her colleague Nidhi Khosla conducted focus groups and individual interviews with health care professionals who had experience providing care to seriously ill South Asian patients and their families.

Health care providers told Khosla and Washington that they perceived South Asian patients to have minimalistic attitudes toward medication in general. Further, South Asians may have prior experiences having limited access to pain medication overseas.

Washington says many South Asian patients and families in this country spent a considerable amount of time living in South Asia, and their experiences with medicines their influence their attitudes about medicine here.

The study is published in American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Medicine. (ANI)