A qualitative study of the impact of pressure sores on patients' quality of life

Ashton, J 2008, A qualitative study of the impact of pressure sores on patients' quality of life , PhD thesis, Salford : University of Salford.

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Pressure ulcers are known to be costly for the healthcare system and delay recovery in many patients. As research continues to highlight the cost of pressure ulcers in humanitarian and financial terms, they are increasingly being used as a key quality indicator. Healthcare professionals and patients may make assumptions about what it must be like to experience a pressure ulcer. Understanding the phenomenon of living with a pressure ulcer is crucial to providing and planning care for the pressure ulcer patient and to enhancing the overall quality of life for these individuals. Pressure ulceration continues to be reported and discussed in the nursing literature whilst the methodological quality of some studies has been poor, there is no doubt that patients continue to suffer harm. One commonly implicated effect of pressure ulcers is a reduction in quality of life. This is believed to be due to factors such as increased pain, social exclusion, malodour and growing limitations on activity and mobility. This study aimed to explore how developing a pressure ulcer affected patients' quality of life. A qualitative approach in the style of phenomenology was used to explore and describe the, experiences of people who had endured an episode of an open pressure ulcer. A purposeful sample of fifteen participants (10 females and five males) were selected, age range: 45-89 years. All the fifteen patients recruited, had a new episode of either a sacral pressure ulcer, or heel ulceration, which was graded three to four using the European Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel grading system. Although grade one and two pressure ulcers are more common, they are not usually referred to the Tissue Viability service as grade three and four are treated as clinical incidents which have to be referred to the Tissue Viability Service. Homogeneous sampling reduces variation and permits a more focused inquiry. For complete confidentiality pseudonym names were given to the participants. Pressure ulcers can result in great discomfort and pain for patients. Enabling respondents to talk freely about their experiences of developing a pressure ulcer, rich data were obtained that should be helpful in understanding the impact of developing a pressure ulcer on people's lives. As emerging themes were similar following data collection the researcher took the decision to stop interviewing at fifteen participants. Six major themes were identified in the study; all the participants had a very good understanding of how a pressure ulcer developed. Each patient could remember exactly when the ulcer developed even though in some cases this had been a long time ago. All the participants expressed feelings of anger and frustration at the impact of developing a pressure ulcer had on their lives.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Contributors: Johnson, M (Supervisor)
Schools: Schools > School of Health and Society > Centre for Health Sciences Research
Depositing User: Institutional Repository
Date Deposited: 03 Oct 2012 13:34
Last Modified: 04 Aug 2022 11:27
URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/26553

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