Converging approaches to understanding early onset familial Alzheimer disease: A First Nation study

Laura Y. Cabrera, B. Lynn Beattie, Emily Dwosh, Judy Illes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objectives: In 2007, a novel pathogenic genetic mutation associated with early onset familial Alzheimer disease was identified in a large First Nation family living in communities across British Columbia, Canada. Building on a community-based participatory study with members of the Nation, we sought to explore the impact and interplay of medicalization with the Nation’s knowledge and approaches to wellness in relation to early onset familial Alzheimer disease. Methods: We performed a secondary content analysis of focus group discussions and interviews with 48 members of the Nation between 2012 and 2013. The analysis focused specifically on geneticization, medicalization, and traditional knowledge of early onset familial Alzheimer disease, as these themes were prominent in the primary analysis. Results: We found that while biomedical explanations of disease permeate the knowledge and understanding of early onset familial Alzheimer disease, traditional concepts about wellness are upheld simultaneously. Conclusion: The analysis brings the theoretical framework of “two-eyed seeing” to the case of early onset familial Alzheimer disease for which the contributions of different ways of knowing are embraced, and in which traditional and western ways complement each other on the path of maintaining wellness in the face of progressive neurologic disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number2050312115621766
JournalSAGE Open Medicine
Volume3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Medicine

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