Content » Vol 48, Issue 4

Original report

Women’s experiences of daily life after anterior cervical decompression and fusion surgery: A qualitative interview study

Anna Hermansen, Anneli Peolsson, Ann-Sofi Kammerlind, Katarina Hjelm
Department of Medical and Health Sciences, Division of Physiotherapy, Linköping University, SE-581 83 Linköping, Sweden. E-mail: anna.hermansen@liu.se
DOI: 10.2340/16501977-2076

Abstract

Objective: To explore and describe women’s experiences of daily life after anterior cervical decompression and fusion surgery.
Design: Qualitative explorative design.
Subjects: Fourteen women aged 39–62 years (median 52 years) were included 1.5–3 years after anterior cervical decompression and fusion for cervical disc disease.
Methods: Individual semi-structured interviews were analysed by qualitative content analysis with an inductive approach.
Results: The women described their experiences of daily life in 5 different ways: being recovered to various extents; impact of remaining symptoms on thoughts and feelings; making daily life work; receiving support from social and occupational networks; and physical and behavioural changes due to interventions and encounters with healthcare professionals.
Conclusion: This interview study provides insight into
women’s daily life after anterior cervical decompression and fusion. Whilst the subjects improved after surgery, they also experienced remaining symptoms and limitations in daily life. A variety of mostly active coping strategies were used to manage daily life. Social support from family, friends, occupational networks and healthcare professionals positively influenced daily life. These findings provide knowledge about aspects of daily life that should be considered in individualized postoperative care and rehabilitation in an attempt to provide better outcomes in women after anterior cervical decompression and fusion.

Lay Abstract

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