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The experiences of being diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>12/2016
<mark>Journal</mark>British Journal of Neuroscience Nursing
Issue number6
Volume12
Number of pages9
Pages (from-to)288-296
Publication statusPublished
Early online date21/12/16
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Being diagnosed with a chronic illness such as Parkinson’s disease (PD) can have a considerable psychological impact on a person’s life. However, this has been little explored and therefore it is unclear what support may be most beneficial at this time. This study therefore explored personal experiences of being diagnosed with PD. Six participants were interviewed and data analysed using thematic analysis. Three over-arching themes emerged: 1) “Understanding it is an important thing” – The value of knowledge; 2) "You’ve got to get used to accepting the fact that you need help" - The social implications of being diagnosed with PD; and 3) "I think you need to talk to somebody" - The importance of supportive others.

The process of diagnosis was complex and often challenging for participants, with respect to
their own understanding and that of others. Recommendations for future practice within
specialist PD services are made, to improve the support that is offered at this time.