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Barriers and Health Behaviors of Rural and Urban Persons with MS

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Objective: To examine the barriers and health behaviors of persons with the chronic neurological condition of multiple sclerosis (MS) living in rural and urban environments. Methods: Eight hundred seven persons with MS completed a mailed survey that included measures of illness-related impairment, barriers, and health behaviors. Results: Rural residents (n=204) reported greater barriers and significantly fewer physical activity behaviors than did urban residents (n=603). Barriers explained greater variance in health behaviors for the urban sample than for the rural sample. Conclusion: Environmental context is an important factor to consider in planning to promote the health of persons with chronic disabling conditions.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: The University of Texas at Austin, School of Nursing, Austin, TX.

Publication date: 1999-11-01

More about this publication?
  • The American Journal of Health Behavior seeks to improve the quality of life through multidisciplinary health efforts in fostering a better understanding of the multidimensional nature of both individuals and social systems as they relate to health behaviors.

    The Journal aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the impact of personal attributes, personality characteristics, behavior patterns, social structure, and processes on health maintenance, health restoration, and health improvement; to disseminate knowledge of holistic, multidisciplinary approaches to designing and implementing effective health programs; and to showcase health behavior analysis skills that have been proven to affect health improvement and recovery.

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