OBJECTIVES: Endobronchial valve (EBV) treatment is a treatment option for selected patients with severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) to reduce dyspnea and improve quality of life. However, the procedure is associated with risk of complications, and not all patients achieve the expected outcomes. The present study explores patients' expectations while waiting for EBV treatment.
METHODS: Fifteen patients accepted for EBV treatment at Aarhus University Hospital in Denmark from October 2020 to June 2021 participated in a 30-min, semi-structured interview about (1) the experience of living with COPD and (2) expectations regarding EBV.
RESULTS: Four themes were identified: a life of reduced quality; hopes and expectations; information about EBV; and perception of risks. Most patients described their lives as not worth living, and they hoped that EBV would give them their physical and social lives back, while also being aware that EBV would probably not work miracles. Patients' information seeking was influenced by their hopes and expectations to the treatment. They filtered out negative information, focusing on the hope for a positive outcome. This made them willing to run the risk of complications.
CONCLUSION: Living a life of considerably reduced quality, patients might have an increased focus on potential positive effects of EBV treatment while filtering out information about potential side effects. This might bias their decision-making process.