A situation-specific theory of Korean immigrant women's menopausal transition.
PURPOSE: To extend the previous model of transitions by including the experiences of low-income Korean immigrant women in the United States during their menopausal transition. The extension results in a situation-specific theory of Korean immigrant women's menopausal transition. DESIGN: Findings from a study of menopausal transition among Korean immigrant women were used as a main source for modification of the conceptual properties of transitions, conditions shaping the transitions, and indicators of healthy transitions. The study was cross-sectional with methodologic triangulation. Quantitative analysis was based on data from 119 first-generation Korean immigrant women who engaged in low-status or low-income work outside their homes; qualitative study using theoretical sampling method included 21 women. METHODS: Analyses included descriptive and inferential statistics and thematic analysis. Integrative conceptual analysis using deductive and inductive reasoning was conducted to determine modifications in theory based on the descriptions of menopausal transition of Korean immigrant women. FINDINGS: Three main themes were identified: (a) the women gave their menopausal transition far less attention than they did to their immigrant and work transition; (b) menopause was a hidden experience in cultural background; and (c) the women "normalized," ignored, and endured symptoms. The findings indicated additions of the following concepts: (a) number, seriousness, and priority of transitions; (b) socioeconomic status; (c) gender; (d) context; (e) attitudes toward health and illness; (f) interrelationships among all conditions shaping transitions; and (g) symptom management. CONCLUSIONS: The proposed situation-specific model is limited in scope. However, it provides understanding of the menopausal transition of Korean immigrant women in context, and is a guide for nursing interventions for immigrant women experiencing transition.
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