Experiences of supporting transplant recipients

Sheffield, Jessica and Murray, Craig (2019) Experiences of supporting transplant recipients. PhD thesis, Lancaster University.

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Close family members of organ transplant recipients are frequently implicated in supporting their loved one through their transplant journey and have a crucial role to play in the patient’s recovery and adjustment posttransplant. Given this, there is a need to fully understand their personal experiences to ensure their needs are fully realized and met within clinical services. This doctoral thesis explores how significant family members experience the process of solid organ transplantation within a paediatric and adult context. It includes a systematic literature review of qualitative research regarding parents’ experiences of organ transplant; a research paper exploring spouses’ experiences of heart transplant; a critical appraisal; and an ethics section. The literature review synthesized qualitative research regarding parents’ experiences of organ transplant. A meta-ethnography of seventeen studies resulted in three interpretative conceptual themes: ‘parenting in the context of uncertainty’, ‘assimilating to new roles and responsibilities’ and (3) ‘an opportunity for renewal and growth’. These findings are discussed in relation to the previous literature as well as discussing clinical implications and future research. The research paper explored spouses’ experiences of heart transplant using interpretative phenomenological analysis. The experiences of seven wives and two husbands of heart transplant recipients were analyzed, resulting in three overarching themes explicating their experiences: ‘driven by a sense of responsibility’, ‘striving for togetherness’, and ‘wrestling with the prospect of them dying’. Similarly, each are discussed in relation to the previous literature, clinical implications and future research. The critical appraisal presents a continued discussion on the research paper including the strengths and challenges experienced in this research. Reflections on aspects of the research process are considered. Potential areas of future research are discussed further.

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Thesis (PhD)
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12 Aug 2019 08:55
Last Modified:
28 Nov 2023 11:42