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Ciência & Saúde Coletiva

On-line version ISSN 1678-4561Print version ISSN 1413-8123


ARCANJO, Giselle Notini; SILVA, Raimunda M. da  and  NATIONS, Marilyn K.. Popular knowledge related to back pain in northeastern Brazilian women. Ciênc. saúde coletiva [online]. 2007, vol.12, n.2, pp.389-397. ISSN 1678-4561.

Analyzing and understanding people's conceptions and actions regarding back pain is relevant since they can be part of the disease's explanation and cure. The nature of this study is qualitative with an anthropological focus. It was carried out from January to February, 2005 with nine women between 45 and 58 years of age with chronic back pains who participated in a health support group for menopausal women in a teaching institution in Fortaleza, Ceará. Nine (9) in-depth ethnographic interviews were conducted with key informants exploring their problems, worries, coping strategies, their notion of quality of life and barriers to achieving this, especially as related to back pain. It was observed that back pain encompasses problems and solutions ranging from psychological, socioeconomic and political to educational aspects. Despite informants' low educational levels, they present a holistic view of health and a rich coping and cure-seeking experience. Because daily life activities can be considered as cultural risk, they need to be considered. It is, thus, necessary to consider the socio-cultural, economic, political and environmental context, in order to develop educational actions to promote health.

Keywords : Culture; Back pain; Women.

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