The emotional toll of end-stage renal disease: Differentiating between social isolation, loneliness, and disengagement

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Abstract

The terms social isolation, loneliness, and disengagement are used frequently in chronic illness with little consensus about the meaning and association between them. Examining the concepts provides a greater understanding of the role each plays in the well-being of patients and guides health care workers in prevention and early recognition. This article presents a modified version of Walker and Avant's (2011) method of concept analysis to differentiate and identify the most appropriate ways to study and overcome the various challenges facing patients with end-stage renal disease. Defining attributes, antecedents, and consequences are identified. Further illustration of the concepts is provided using a side-by-side comparison including preventive considerations and nursing action plans.

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