Notes that living with arthritis involves pain and fatigue, physical limitations, problems with social relationships and loss of social and leisure activities. Describes the psychosocial challenges associated with living with arthritis and examines whether, as a result of attending an arthritis self‐management programme (ASMP), participants felt more capable of meeting those challenges. Interviews were conducted with 16 participants before they attended the ASMP; two weeks after completing the course; and at eight months. During the ASMP, participants benefited from developing an empathic relationship with their peers, thereby reducing feelings of isolation. The ASMP also promoted positive behavioural changes such as exercise, relaxation and pain management. A greater sense of personal control served as a precursor for involvement in initiatives aimed at providing solutions for their local arthritis communities. Suggests a self‐management programme can provide a forum that facilitates peer support and improves coping skills.
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- user studies