Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Lost In Translation. Language Barrier Adds Confusion To Pre-Natal Testing

09.06.2008
Many people struggle to understand the complexities of genetic problems in pregnancy and find medical language difficult to understand, particularly when faced with major decisions such as whether to terminate a pregnancy.

A recent study, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), investigated how Britain’s Bangladeshi community understand the disorders, and make decisions about testing and screening in the light of health care and religious opinion.

The researchers found language difficulties added a great deal of misunderstanding about the nature and cause of disorders. There were difficulties, for example, over the distinction between being ‘affected’ and being a ‘carrier’. The nature of risk, and the kind of inferences that can be made from genetic testing, can also be a source of confusion.

While earlier studies have found that similar confusions are common among the general public as well, the difficulties of translation can make minority groups, such as the Bangladeshis, especially vulnerable to such misunderstandings.

Those who have English as a second language are not alone in struggling to understand the complexities of medical terminology. Researchers find that these misunderstandings are not solely connected to language as a barrier but commonly to misinterpreting medical information. Such as a 75% chance of a having a child that is not being affected by a particular condition can be interpreted as having a child that is 75% normal.

Problems linked to use of interpreters are compounded by the fact that there may be medical terms for which there is no appropriate translation. Women with limited English may be entirely reliant on their husband, or another family member, for an explanation of what consultants or genetics counsellors have said. As a result, information they receive may be inaccurate, misunderstood, or incomplete.

Senior Research Fellow, Dr Santi Rozario, said: “Genetic disorder is likely to be understood by Bangladeshi Muslims in Britain, at least initially, as a biomedical problem for which conventional medical treatment is appropriate, and indeed fard (obligatory) as an Islamic duty. Bangladeshi families will therefore almost always look to the British medical system for assistance.”

The research shows us that the issue is not simply one of numbers or availability of interpreters and it is a complex and difficult time for patients. Greater understanding of the language barrier and possible misunderstanding need to be considered when dealing with patients whose first language is not English.

Danielle Moore | alfa
Further information:
http://www.esrcsocietytoday.ac.uk

More articles from Social Sciences:

nachricht Amazingly flexible: Learning to read in your thirties profoundly transforms the brain
26.05.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Kognitions- und Neurowissenschaften

nachricht Fixating on faces
26.01.2017 | California Institute of Technology

All articles from Social Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

New bioimaging technique is fast and economical

21.08.2017 | Medical Engineering

Silk could improve sensitivity, flexibility of wearable body sensors

21.08.2017 | Materials Sciences

On the way to developing a new active ingredient against chronic infections

21.08.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>