JOURNAL ARTICLE

Nurses' experiences of the encounter with elderly patients in acute confusional state in orthopaedic care

Edith M Andersson, Ingalill R Hallberg, Anna-Karin Edberg
International Journal of Nursing Studies 2003, 40 (4): 437-48
12667520
The aim of this study was to illuminate nurses' experiences of the encounter with elderly patients who developed acute confusional state (ACS) in orthopaedic care. Forty-eight nurses with professional background as registered (n=26) or licensed practical nurses (n=22) who took part in the nursing care of acute confused patients were involved. Open-ended unstructured interviews were conducted with regard to the course of events, experiences and interpretation of what had happened during the ACS as well as the nurses' actions and encounter with the confused patient. The texts were analysed using manifest and latent content analysis, revealing that the nurses had difficulties in reaching the patients and their reality, and thus in understanding their experiences. Interpretation of the nurses' experiences showed that the nurses found it difficult to reach the patients' reality because the patients were in a divided and/or different world. They interpreted the patients as seeking solitude or company, keeping a distance or being suspicious of the nurses. The findings indicated that the interaction in the encounter between the acutely confused patients and the nurses indicated insufficient and/or broken reciprocity. The nurses used various strategies to meet the patients, being a companion and/or being a surrogate. They acted in the encounter based on their view of the patient and their ability to enter into and understand the patients' situation. The strategies were more or less successful, sometimes resulting in contact and calming the patients and in other cases increasing the patients' irritation and anger. The results were more successful when the strategies were derived from the nurses' interpretation of the patients' situation and the nurses paid attention to the patients and confirmed them.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article

Discussion

You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Trending Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read
12667520
×

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.

×

Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"