Monday, November 3, 2003

This presentation is part of : Women's Health

Inner Strength in Women with Chronic Health Conditions

Gayle Marie Roux, PhD, RN, CNS, NP-C, School of Nursing, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA, USA and Catherine E. Dingley, MSN, FNP, School of Nursing, University of Colorado Health Science Center, Denver, CO, USA.
Learning Objective #1: Compare the factor analysis results with the theoretical composition of the instrument
Learning Objective #2: Discuss the use of the instrument for research and practice in national and international settings

Objective: The study purpose was to conduct validity and psychometric testing on a new instrument to measure inner strength in women with chronic health conditions.

Design: A nonexperimental design was used for the psychometric testing of the instrument (ISQ).

Population, Sample and Setting: The sample included 154 women aged 22-83 residing in 14 states in the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic. African American women comprised 35% of the sample. Participants reported conditions of breast cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and transplantation.

Concept Studied: Based on previous qualitative studies, inner strength is defined as a central human resource that promotes well-being.

Method: The items for the ISQ were generated from the findings of 12 years of qualitative studies on women with chronic health conditions. Tests of face and content validity were conducted with professional experts and clients. Factor analysis was used to examine the theoretical components of the ISQ. Using a minimum eigenvalue of 1.0 as the criterion for factors, the factors were analyzed to minimize multicollinearity and maximize parsimony. Using principal component analysis, the factors were rotated using varimax rotation procedure and scree plots were examined. Construct validity was tested.

Findings: The pattern of loading was clear and could be reduced to 4 factors. All 37 items had loadings >.40 on the factor. The reliability of the ISQ was .86. Each scale had a Cronbach’s alpha > .80: Knowing and Searching .83, Connectedness .89, Physical Self-spirit .87, and Mental Self-spirit .87.

Conclusion: Factor analysis was congruent with the grounded theory, with the exception of one concept. The instrument had promising psychometric properties after this second testing. Further research with larger samples is currently being conducted.

Implications: The ISQ can be used in global clinical settings to examine women’s inner strengths associated with social, physical, and mental needs to improve outcomes and enhance well-being.

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