A qualitative exploration of the impact of persistent pain

Smith, Jess and Murray, Craig and Eccles, Fiona (2021) A qualitative exploration of the impact of persistent pain. PhD thesis, Lancaster University.

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This thesis offers a qualitative exploration of the experience of living with persistent pain. Section One presents a systematic review and thematic synthesis considering the experience of parenting children with persistent pain. A search identified 17 relevant papers which were appraised for quality and analysed to reveal six themes. These related to seeking control in an uncontrollable situation; being let down by experts and becoming their own expert; fearing judgment whilst judging themselves; seeking normality even whilst adapting to a ‘new normal’; focusing on the child versus an awareness of the impact on the wider family; and the conflicting interests in raising a child with persistent pain. The place of these findings within the wider literature is considered, and clinical implications are discussed. In Section Two, an interpretative phenomenological analysis approach was utilised to explore the impact of complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) on participants’ identity. Six semi-structured interviews were completed and transcribed verbatim. Analysis yielded four themes: the time taken to re-establish an identity; a sense of alienation from others; shame caused by CPRS; and the importance of control to a sense of self. Findings are discussed in relation to the extant literature, and implications for clinical practice are considered, including therapeutic models which may hold potential for this group. Finally, in Section Three a critical appraisal considered the findings of the two papers, as well as strengths and limitations of the research paper. Elements of reflexivity are explored, as is the impact of COVID-19 upon the thesis. Suggestions for future research are also outlined.

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Thesis (PhD)
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31 Mar 2021 11:38
Last Modified:
16 Jul 2024 05:54