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Race, Pain, and Beliefs Associated with Interest in Complementary and Alternative Medicine among Inner City Veterans.

Goldstein JN, Ibrahim SA, Frankel ES, Mao JJ. Race, Pain, and Beliefs Associated with Interest in Complementary and Alternative Medicine among Inner City Veterans. Pain medicine (Malden, Mass.). 2015 Aug 1; 16(8):1467-74.

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OBJECTIVE: To investigate the prevalence and determinants of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) interest level among a racially diverse cohort of inner city veterans who receive primary care at the VA Medical Center. DESIGN: Cross-sectional survey study SETTING: Philadelphia VA Medical Center SUBJECTS: Primary care patients (n? = 258) METHODS: Interest in CAM was measured using a single item question. Patient treatment beliefs were assessed using validated instruments. We evaluated factors associated with patient interest in CAM using a multivariate logistic regression model. RESULTS: In this sample of 258 inner city primary care VA patients, interest in CAM was high 80% (n? = 206). Interest in CAM was strongly associated with African American race [adjusted odds ratio (AOR) 2.19, 95% Confidence Interval (CI) 1.05-4.60, P? = 0.037], higher levels of education (AOR 4.33, 95% CI 1.80-10.40, P? = 0.001), presence of moderate to severe pain (AOR 2.02, 95% CI 1.02-4.78, P? = 0.043), and expectations of benefit from CAM use (AOR 1.21, 95% CI 1.06-1.36, P? = 0.004). CONCLUSIONS: CAM approaches have broad appeal within this inner city cohort of veterans, particularly among African Americans, those that experience pain and those that expect greater benefit from CAM. These findings may inform the development of patient-centered integrative pain management for veterans.

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