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Sun K, Eudy AM, Criscione-Schreiber LG, Sadun RE, Rogers JL, Doss J, Corneli AL, Bosworth HB, Clowse MEB. Racial Differences in Patient-provider Communication, Patient Self-efficacy, and Their Associations With Systemic Lupus Erythematosus-related Damage: A Cross-sectional Survey. The Journal of rheumatology. 2021 Jul 1; 48(7):1022-1028.
OBJECTIVE: Despite significant racial disparities in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) outcomes, few studies have examined how disparities may be perpetuated in clinical encounters. We aimed to explore associations between areas of clinical encounters - patient-provider communication and patient self-efficacy - with SLE-related damage, in order to identify potential areas for intervention to reduce SLE outcome disparities. METHODS: We collected cross-sectional data from a tertiary SLE clinic including patient-provider communication, general self-efficacy, self-efficacy for managing medications and treatments, patient-reported health status, and clinical information. We compared racial groups and used logistic regression to assess race-stratified association of patient-provider communication and patient self-efficacy with having SLE-related damage. RESULTS: Among 121 patients (37% White, 63% African American), African Americans were younger, more likely to be on Medicaid, and less likely to be college educated, married, or living with a partner or spouse. African Americans reported less fatigue and better social function, took more complex SLE medication regimens, had lower fibromyalgia (FM) scores, and had higher SLE disease activity and SLE-related damage scores. African Americans reported similar self-efficacy compared to White patients, but they reported more hurried communication with providers, which was reflected in their perception that providers used words that were difficult to understand. Perceiving providers use difficult words and lower general self-efficacy were associated with having SLE-related damage among African American but not White patients. CONCLUSION: African Americans had more severe SLE and perceived more hurried communication with providers. Both worse communication and lower self-efficacy were associated with having SLE-related damage among African American but not White patients, suggesting that these factors should be investigated as potential interventions to reduce SLE racial disparities.