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Meanings of eating deficiencies for people admitted to palliative home care
Ersta Sköndal University College, Palliative Research Centre, PRC. Karolinska institutet.
Ersta Sköndal University College, Palliative Research Centre, PRC. Karolinska institutet.
Karolinska institutet.
Ersta Sköndal University College, Palliative Research Centre, PRC. Karolinska institutet.
2015 (English)In: Palliative & Supportive Care, ISSN 1478-9515, E-ISSN 1478-9523, Vol. 13, no 05, 1231-1239 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Food and eating are embedded in people's everyday social lives: at home with family members and as part of social interactions. For people with progressive life-limiting conditions, however, eating is often obstructed. The objective of the present study was to explore the meanings of living with eating deficiencies at the end of life among people admitted to specialist palliative home care.

This qualitative inductive study employed an interpretive descriptive approach. A dozen persons, with various diagnoses and eating deficiencies, admitted to two specialist palliative home care units, participated. Data were collected through individual repeated interviews. Data collection and analysis were guided by the interpretive description method.

The results reveal that eating deficiencies among people with progressive life-limiting conditions are existentially loaded markers of impending death. Finding ways to overcome declined food intake and hampered eating enabled our participants to feel able to influence their own well-being and remain hopeful. The results also showed that the eating deficiencies influenced participants' relationships and social interactions in ways that hampered their possibilities of sharing valuable moments together with friends and family members during the final period of life.

Efforts to minimize the distress that people experience in relation to the challenges they face with eating deficiencies are important for well-being at the end of life. Person-centered approaches to acknowledge and support individuals' own ways of experiencing and dealing with their eating deficiencies are recommended that include a multidimensional perspective on food and eating.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 13, no 05, 1231-1239 p.
Keyword [en]
Eating deficiencies, Existential, Food intake, Interpretive description, Palliative care
National Category
Health Sciences Nursing
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:esh:diva-4903DOI: 10.1017/S1478951514001199PubMedID: 25335943OAI: oai:DiVA.org:esh-4903DiVA: diva2:867229
Note

Publication status in dissertation: Published online october 22

Available from: 2015-11-05 Created: 2015-11-05 Last updated: 2017-02-15Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Mat och måltider vid livets slut: Patienter och närståendes erfarenheter av ätsvårigheter
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Mat och måltider vid livets slut: Patienter och närståendes erfarenheter av ätsvårigheter
2015 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Food and meals are embedded in people’s everyday social life. For people with progressive life-limiting conditions eating is often obstructed. When a dying person is cared for at home, family members often take responsibility for the provision of food and mealtimes. Previous research has shown that the situation around mealtimes can be stressful for patients and their partners. The overall aim of this thesis was to to explore meanings of eating deficiencies at the end of life, from a patient and partner perspective Methods: Interpretive descriptive design was chosen as the study sought to explore experiences related to eating deficiencies. Data was based on repeated individual interviews with dying persons (study I) and retrospective individual interviews with partners 3-6 months after the death of ill persons (study II). Data collection and analysis were guided by the interpretive description method. Findings: The results from the two studies showed that eating deficiencies among people with progressive life-limiting conditions and their partners are existentially loaded markers of impending death (I, II). The results also show that eating deficiencies can influence relationships and social interaction in ways that may hamper the possibility of sharing moments together with friends and family members that are valuable during the last period of life (I). Conclusion: Efforts to minimize the distress people with eating deficiencies and progressive life-limiting conditions and their partners may experience are important for well-being. Person-centered approaches to acknowledge and support individuals’ own ways of experiencing and dealing with eating deficiencies are recommended that include a holistic perspective on food and eating.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Karolinska institutet, 2015. 38 p.
National Category
Nursing
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:esh:diva-5779 (URN)9789175497587 (ISBN)
Public defence
2015-02-06, Aulan, Stigbergsgatan 30, Stockholm, 13:00
Supervisors
Available from: 2017-02-15 Created: 2017-02-15 Last updated: 2017-02-15Bibliographically approved

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