THE LIVED EXPERIENCE OF THE PERSON DEPENDENT ON HAEMODIALYSIS

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Abstract

The phenomenon of experiencing life dependent on haemodialysis is infinitely multi-faceted. It effects all aspects of people's lives, and not only their lives, but those of the people around them. Busy dialysis units often do not have time to explore these effects on the lives of their patients outside the clinical setting.

Aims:

The aim of this qualitative study was to step into the lives of seven patients once they were outside the dialysis unit.

Method:

Seven chronic haemodialysis patients were selected and interviewed using an in-depth semi-structured approach, following the philosophy of Heidegger. Data was analysed using Colaizzi's seven-stage process.

Results:

The strongest common theme emerged through descriptions of the patient's ‘Sense of Self’, within which emerged sub-themes; The Future Self, The Living Self, The Mortal/Fragile Self and The Growing/Learning Self. These were further explored and related back to importance of awareness of such findings within the renal haemodialysis practice setting.

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