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Enjoying tactile touch and gaining hope when being cared for in intenisve care: A phenomenological hermeneutical study
(ADULT)
2009 (English)In: Intensive & Critical Care Nursing, ISSN 0964-3397, E-ISSN 1532-4036, Vol. 25, no 6, 323-331 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Touch has been a part of the healing process in many civilisations and cultures throughout the centuries. Nurses frequently use touch to provide comfort and reach their patients. The aim of this study was to illuminate the meaning of receiving tactile touch when being cared for in an intensive care unit. Tactile touch is a complementary method including the use of effleurage, which means soft stroking movements along the body. The context used to illuminate the meaning of receiving tactile touch was two general intensive care units (ICUs). Six patients, who have been cared for in the two ICUs, participated in the study. A phenomenological–hermeneutical method based on the philosophy of Ricoeur and developed for nursing research by Lindseth and Norberg [Lindseth A, Norberg A. A phenomenological hermeneutical method for researching lived experience. Scandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences, 2004;18:145–53] was chosen for the analysis. Data consisted of narratives, which were analysed in three recurring phases: naïve understanding, structural analyses and comprehensive understanding. Two main themes were found: being connected to oneself and being unable to gain and maintain pleasure. The comprehensive understanding of receiving tactile touch during intensive care seems to be an expression of enjoying tactile touch and gaining hope for the future. This study reveals that it is possible to experience moments of pleasure in the midst of being a severely ill patient at an ICU and, through this experience also gain hope.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2009. Vol. 25, no 6, 323-331 p.
Keyword [en]
Intensive care, Tactile touch, Phenomenological hermeneutic, Narratives
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-17134DOI: 10.1016/j.iccn.2009.07.001OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hj-17134DiVA: diva2:478071
Available from: 2012-01-15 Created: 2012-01-15 Last updated: 2012-06-05Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Tactile touch in intensive care: Nurses' preparation, patients' experiences and the effects on stress parameters
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Tactile touch in intensive care: Nurses' preparation, patients' experiences and the effects on stress parameters
2008 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Aim: The overall aim of this thesis was to acquire knowledge about whether tactile touch as a complementary method can (i) promote comfort and (ii) reduce stress reactions during care in an intensive care unit (ICU) Method: In Paper I, five nurses with a touch therapist training were interviewed about their experiences of preparation before giving tactile touch in an ICU. To analyse the meaning of preparation as a phenomenon, Giorgi’s descriptive phenomenological approach was used. In Paper II and III a randomised controlled trial was set up to investigate the effects of a five-day tactile touch intervention on patients’ oxytocin levels in arterial blood (II), on patients’ blood pressure, heart rate and blood glucose level, and on patients’ levels of anxiety, sedation and alertness (III). Forty-four patients were randomised to either an intervention group (n = 21) or a control group (n = 23). Data were analysed with non-parametric statistics. In Paper IV, six patients who had received the tactile touch intervention were interviewed to illuminate the experience of receiving tactile touch during intensive care. To gain a deeper understanding of the phenomenon and to illuminate the meaning, Ricoeur’s phenomenological hermeneutical method, developed by Lindseth and Norberg, was used. Findings: The nurses need four constituents (inner balance, unconditional respect for the patients’ integrity, a relationship with the patient characterized by reciprocal trust and a supportive environment) to be prepared and go through the transition from nurse to touch therapist (I). In the intervention study, no significant differences were shown for oxytocin levels between intervention and control group over time or within each day (II). There were significantly lower levels of anxiety for patients in the intervention group. There were no significant differences between the intervention and control groups for blood pressure, heart rate, the use of drugs, levels of sedation or blood glucose levels (III). The significance of receiving tactile touch during intensive care was described as the creation of an imagined room along with the touch therapist. In this imagined room, the patients enjoyed tactile touch and gained hope for the future (IV). Conclusion: Nurses needed internal and external balance to be prepared for providing tactile touch. Patients did not notice the surroundings as much as the nurses did. Patients enjoyed the tactile touch and experienced comfort. The impact on stress parameters were limited, except for levels of anxiety which declined significantly. The results gave some evidence for the benefit of tactile touch given to patients in intensive care.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Borås: Högskolan i Borås och Karlstads Universitet, 2008. 91 p.
Series
Skrifter från Högskolan i Borås, ISSN 0280-381X ; 11
Keyword
complementary method, stress, oxytocin, lifeworld research
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-17138 (URN)978-91-85659-15-9 (ISBN)
Public defence
Högskolan i Borås, Borås (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note
Borås: Högskolan i Borås, Institutionen för vårdvetenskap. Karlstad: Karlstads Universitet, Avdelningen för omvårdnad.Available from: 2012-06-05 Created: 2012-01-15 Last updated: 2012-06-05Bibliographically approved

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