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Living with the memories—parents’ experiences of their newborn child undergoing heart surgery abroad : A qualitative study

Kristjánsdóttir, Ólöf LU ; Sjöström-Strand, Annica LU and Kristjánsdóttir, Gudrún LU (2020) In International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 17(23).
Abstract

Parents of children with a congenital heart defect needing complex heart surgery are at high risk of developing health problems. One can assume that parents whose child undergoes heart surgery abroad will undoubtably face added and unique stressors and health vulnerabilities. The aim of this qualitative study was to explore the transition experiences of parents of children who underwent a complex heart surgery abroad as newborns 1–5 years ago. The qualitative content analysis methodology by Graneheim and Lundman was used. A purposive sample of twelve parents, whose child had undergone a heart surgery abroad, participated in face-to-face, semi-structured interviews. Interviews were transcribed and analyzed using inductive qualitative... (More)

Parents of children with a congenital heart defect needing complex heart surgery are at high risk of developing health problems. One can assume that parents whose child undergoes heart surgery abroad will undoubtably face added and unique stressors and health vulnerabilities. The aim of this qualitative study was to explore the transition experiences of parents of children who underwent a complex heart surgery abroad as newborns 1–5 years ago. The qualitative content analysis methodology by Graneheim and Lundman was used. A purposive sample of twelve parents, whose child had undergone a heart surgery abroad, participated in face-to-face, semi-structured interviews. Interviews were transcribed and analyzed using inductive qualitative content analysis. The overarching theme of “living with the memories” emerged from parents’ experiences, emphasizing the long-lasting impact this stressful event had on their lives. These experiences were characterized by four main categories: (1) being in an unknown situation; (2) feeling connected; (3) wishing to be accepted; and (4) finding closure. The findings show that the transition of having a newborn child undergo heart surgery abroad superimposed on the expected parenthood. That parents need to feel connected and included as legitimate clients was highlighted in their stories of experienced vulnerabilities. The results highlight the need for interdisciplinary teams to support these vulnerable families, particularly with follow-up care.

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author
; and
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Child, Congenital heart disease, Content analysis, Cross-border care, Heart surgery, Parent, Qualitative research, Transitions
in
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
volume
17
issue
23
article number
8840
pages
16 pages
publisher
MDPI AG
external identifiers
  • scopus:85096903757
  • pmid:33260688
ISSN
1661-7827
DOI
10.3390/ijerph17238840
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
dcf7dd41-7a6f-49f9-9056-458784d012b6
date added to LUP
2020-12-10 07:01:23
date last changed
2021-04-20 05:36:45
@article{dcf7dd41-7a6f-49f9-9056-458784d012b6,
  abstract     = {<p>Parents of children with a congenital heart defect needing complex heart surgery are at high risk of developing health problems. One can assume that parents whose child undergoes heart surgery abroad will undoubtably face added and unique stressors and health vulnerabilities. The aim of this qualitative study was to explore the transition experiences of parents of children who underwent a complex heart surgery abroad as newborns 1–5 years ago. The qualitative content analysis methodology by Graneheim and Lundman was used. A purposive sample of twelve parents, whose child had undergone a heart surgery abroad, participated in face-to-face, semi-structured interviews. Interviews were transcribed and analyzed using inductive qualitative content analysis. The overarching theme of “living with the memories” emerged from parents’ experiences, emphasizing the long-lasting impact this stressful event had on their lives. These experiences were characterized by four main categories: (1) being in an unknown situation; (2) feeling connected; (3) wishing to be accepted; and (4) finding closure. The findings show that the transition of having a newborn child undergo heart surgery abroad superimposed on the expected parenthood. That parents need to feel connected and included as legitimate clients was highlighted in their stories of experienced vulnerabilities. The results highlight the need for interdisciplinary teams to support these vulnerable families, particularly with follow-up care.</p>},
  author       = {Kristjánsdóttir, Ólöf and Sjöström-Strand, Annica and Kristjánsdóttir, Gudrún},
  issn         = {1661-7827},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {23},
  publisher    = {MDPI AG},
  series       = {International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health},
  title        = {Living with the memories—parents’ experiences of their newborn child undergoing heart surgery abroad : A qualitative study},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17238840},
  doi          = {10.3390/ijerph17238840},
  volume       = {17},
  year         = {2020},
}