An Exploration of the Relationships between Health Promoting Behaviors and Stroke in African Americans

Lenecia Ross, Gardner-Webb University


Stroke is the leading cause of death in the United States. African Americans present a risk for first time stroke, which is twice as high as Caucasians. Literature has shown the primary cause of increased incidence of stroke in African Americans is racial disparities related to health promotion among African Americans. This descriptive correlational study investigated the relationships in health promotion behaviors, and stroke in African American men and women. Utilizing the Health Promotion Model (HPM) as the theoretical framework, current health promoting behaviors and practices related to stroke were examined in a convenience sample of 24 African American men and women located at a church in the Southeastern United States. Stroke risks and health promotion were measured by Sullivan's Cerebrovascular Attitudes and Beliefs Scale-Revised (CABS-R). Increased knowledge of the factors which influence African Americans and health promotion behaviors may provide healthcare professionals with information to implement strategies to address racial disparities among African Americans. The goal is to increase awareness of stroke risk factors and promote healthy behaviors in African Americans to decrease mortality and racial disparity from stroke. The results of this study may increase healthcare professionals' knowledge and awareness of the importance of exploring health promotion behaviors related to stroke among African Americans. Keywords: African Americans, stroke, health promotion.