Lay Explanations of Type 2 Diabetes in Bangkok, Thailand

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Naemiratch, Bhensri and Manderson, Lenore (2007) Lay Explanations of Type 2 Diabetes in Bangkok, Thailand. Anthropology and Medicine, 14 (1). pp. 83-94. ISSN 1364-8470

Abstract

The increasing incidence of and mortality associated with type 2 diabetes in Thailand, and the lack of knowledge of lay understandings of diabetes, are the starting points of this paper. Ethnographic research was undertaken in an inner zone district of Bangkok, with participant observation, interviews and case studies conducted with individuals who had lived with type 2 diabetes for at least three years. Culturally specific explanations exist for the aetiology, pathology and course of illness, and responses to biomedical treatment. The notion of kam—the negative effects of past behaviour—underpinned participants’ explanations of the cause of diabetes. The presentation and development of the disease derive from Thai traditional medical theory, but its management, aimed at controlling blood glucose levels and preventing complications, involves both cosmopolitan and traditional medicines. This syncretic approach to cause, diagnosis and management suggests the value of a more comprehensive approach in health education, diagnosis and treatment.

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Item type Article
URI https://vuir.vu.edu.au/id/eprint/3364
DOI https://doi.org/10.1080/13648470601106418
Official URL http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/1364847...
Subjects Historical > FOR Classification > 1199 Other Medical and Health Sciences
Historical > FOR Classification > 2204 Religion and Religious Traditions
Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > Australian Community Centre for Diabetes
Keywords ResPubID18998, Thailand, type 2 diabetes, diagnosis, management
Citations in Scopus 9 - View on Scopus
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