Management of everyday life after a hand operation—A qualitative study of patients with a weak sense of coherence

Alice Ørts Hansen*, Kamilla Kielsgaard, Stina Meyer Larsen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Background: A hand-related disorder (HRD) has a more significant impact on participation in everyday life for patients with a weak sense of coherence (SOC) compared to those with a strong SOC. Therefore, understanding how patients with a weak SOC manage the conditions of everyday life after a hand operation is of clinical interest. Purpose: This study aimed to explore how patients with a weak SOC experience and manage the conditions of everyday life after an operation for an HRD. Study Design: A qualitative design with a hermeneutic approach. Methods: An in-depth interview was conducted with each of eight adults—five women and three men—with an HRD and a weak SOC (SOC-13 score <52). Participants with varying HRDs were interviewed once between six and 13 weeks after the hand operation. Data were analyzed based on a hermeneutic approach. Results: The analyses resulted in five themes: even more conditions to handle, challenges in everyday life, managing everyday life, different expectations, and the influence of information on everyday life. The lives of most participants were significantly impacted: they experienced a range of difficulties managing their activities and roles after their operation. The participants felt uncertain about managing everyday life and the future and expressed unfulfilled expectations for different reasons. All wanted individualized information about what to expect. Conclusions: Participants had several conditions in life that challenged their everyday lives, and the HRD made their everyday lives even more challenging. The extent to which they felt affected appeared to relate to their perception of their presurgery activities. They had several strategies to manage everyday life but used these to varying extent. Their expectations about the outcome had both positive and negative effects on their ability to manage everyday life, and individually adapted information was requested about what to expect and how to cope with everyday life after the surgery.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Hand Therapy
ISSN0894-1130
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 25. Jan 2024

Keywords

  • Everyday activities
  • Hand injury
  • Hand-related disorders
  • Managing everyday life
  • Psychosocial factors
  • SOC

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