Adaptive coping skills for older African Americans with arthritis

Karen S. Stephenson, W. K. Yee, Jeffrey R. Lisse

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Older African Americans have high rates of disability from arthritis. The Arthritis Self-Help (ASH) course teaches coping skills for arthritis, but has not been evaluated as an intervention in African Americans. Pain is the most common reason that people with arthritis seek medical intervention, but evaluation of the ASH program must use variables in addition to pain to test the effectiveness of the program. The stress-and-coping model suggests that activity and physical limitation, locus of control, life satisfaction, and self-efficacy for exercise and cognitive symptom management are key variables for assessing the effectiveness of the ASH program. Twenty-six older African Americans, 53-84 years of age, completed the ASH program, and the Wilcoxin Matched-Pair Ranked Sign Test showed improvement after the ASH course for all variables except the self-efficacy measures. Further study should evaluate the role of self-efficacy for coping skills in these older persons.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)75-87
Number of pages13
JournalTopics in Geriatric Rehabilitation
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1997
Externally publishedYes


  • African American
  • adaptive coping skills
  • arthritis
  • stress-and-coping model

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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