Osteoporosis prevention: A conceptual model

Date

1997-12

Authors

Hisley, Shelton

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Abstract

Recently, prevention of osteoporosis has taken on greater importance, as women have been encouraged to change or modify health-related behaviors in an effort to prevent the development of osteoporosis. To be effective in osteoporosis prevention, it is important for nurses to recognize that beliefs and perceptions many influence women's decisions to engage in preventive actions. This study was designed to explore the usefulness of an osteoporosis prevention conceptual model in identifying factors which shape overall perception of osteoporosis risk and impact the practice of osteoporosis preventive actions among perimenopausal women. According to the conceptual model, heightened osteoporosis risk perception is associated with increased practice of dietary calcium and regular exercise, two osteoporosis preventive actions.

Cognitive representation and the Health Belief Model provided the theoretical underpinnings for development of the osteoporosis prevention conceptual model. Conceptual models are useful in potentiating nursing knowledge and in guiding nursing education, practice, and research. As nursing advances into the domain of a scientific discipline, the development of conceptual models represents an important strategy in the ongoing development of nursing science.

A non-experimental, descriptive design was used. Participants included 100 perimenopausal women attending a women's health clinic. Three instruments were employed to collect data: (1) the Osteoporosis Health Belief Scale; (2) the Osteoporosis Self-Efficacy Scale; and (3) the Personal Health Questionnaire. Data analysis included use of descriptive statistics to summarize the sample in terms of demographic variables, reliability and validity testing of the instruments, and hypothesis testing using correlation and multiple regression techniques.

Pearson's Correlation was employed to determine the relationships proposed within the osteoporosis prevention conceptual model. There is a significant relationship between perceived osteoporosis seriousness (r=0.61,p<.0001) and susceptibility (r=0.59,p<.0001) and overall perception of osteoporosis risk. There is a significant (r=0.29,p<.003) relationship between perception of osteoporosis risk and the practice of dietary calcium and regular exercise, two osteoporosis preventive actions.Multiple regression was used to analyze the individual contributions of the conceptual model constructs to the practice of osteoporosis preventive actions. Perceived barriers to exercise accounted for 19% of the variability of osteoporosis preventive actions, and was the single greatest predictor of osteoporosis preventive actions.

The development of the osteoporosis prevention conceptual model contributes to the understanding of perimenopausal women's perceptions regarding osteoporosis and preventive behavior. The implications for nursing include the use of the model in designing and implementing individualized osteoporosis prevention strategies.

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Keywords

Behavioral sciences, Womens studies, Rehabilitation, Therapy, Osteoporosis, Prevention

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