alexa Conserving the vitality of suffering: addressing family constraints to illness conversations.


Family Medicine & Medical Science Research

Author(s): Tapp DM

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Abstract When persons are confronted with life-threatening or chronic illness, there is always a possibility that family members other than the person experiencing the illness also suffer as they attempt to manage their own distress. This paper describes exemplars from a hermeneutic study that explored therapeutic conversations between nurses and families who were living with a member experiencing ischaemic heart disease. These conversations uncovered the complexity of both individual and family suffering following acute cardiac illness events, and called attention to nursing practices that addressed some of the ways that family members were constrained from having conversations about the illness. When spaces were created for these conversations to occur, possibilities for making sense of illness and suffering were revealed as vital. These understandings support the efforts of family members to sustain and conserve family relationships in the face of illness and suffering, and inform both the professional and personal lives of nurses.
This article was published in Nurs Inq and referenced in Family Medicine & Medical Science Research

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