Adolescents' Experiences of Scoliosis Surgery and the Trajectory of Self-Reported Pain: A Mixed-Methods Study
Scoliosis surgery for adolescents is a major surgery with a difficult recovery. In this study, a mixed-methods design was used to broaden the scope of adolescents' experiences of surgery for idiopathic scoliosis and the trajectory of self-reported pain during the hospital stay and through the first 6 months of recovery at home. Self-reports of pain, diaries, and interviews were analyzed separately. The results were then integrated with each other. The trajectory of self-reported pain varied hugely between individuals. Adolescents experienced physical suffering and struggled to not be overwhelmed. The adolescents described the environmental and supportive factors that enabled them to cope and how they hovered between suffering and control as they strived toward normality. This study highlights areas of potential improvement in perioperative scoliosis care in terms of nursing support and pain management.