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posted on 2018-03-16, 04:17 authored by Ricardo Fueyo-Díaz, Rosa Magallón-Botaya, Santiago Gascón-Santos, Ángela Asensio-Martínez, Guillermo Palacios-Navarro, Juan J. Sebastián-Domingo

The aim of this study was to develop a scale to assess the levels of specific self-efficacy in order to enhance adherence to a gluten-free diet and the life quality of celiac patients. Celiac disease is a chronic small intestinal immune-mediated enteropathy precipitated by exposure to dietary gluten in genetically predisposed people. The only treatment is a strict lifelong gluten-free diet. Within the framework of Social Cognitive Theory, expectation of self-efficacy is understood as the degree in which a person believes himself to be capable of performing a certain task (e.g., adhering to a gluten-free diet), a construct which has been widely studied in its relation with adopting healthy behaviors, but scarcely in relation to celiac disease. A validation study was carried out in various stages: preparation of the protocol; construction of the questionnaire and a pilot run with 20 patients; validation of the scale with 563 patients and statistical analysis. A 25-item scale was developed. Feasibility was excellent (99.82% of participants completed all the questions). Factorial analysis pointed to the existence of five factors that explained 70.98% of the variance with a Cronbach alpha of 0.81 for the scale overall and between 0.64 and 0.90 for each factor. The scale showed a Spearman's Rho coefficient of 0.279 with the General self-efficacy Scale. This easily administered scale provides good psychometric properties for evaluating specific self-efficacy of celiac patients in adhering to treatment. It seeks to be the first scale that provides not only a measurement of specific self-efficacy in celiac disease, but also to determine its levels for each of the areas as a first step toward designing interventions of self-management and empowerment programs to cope with the disease.