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Title: What are the personal and health care experiences of women with MS?
Author: Dawson, L.
Awarding Body: University of Salford
Current Institution: University of Salford
Date of Award: 2012
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Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a neurological condition with current statistics highlighting that, worldwide, women predominantly experience its impact at a rate of 4:1 (Jelinek, 2010). There are currently no medical cures for the illness and people can become extremely physically disabled (Kalb, 2005). This research explores the lived experiences of women who have a diagnosis of MS and the primary data in this research were collected during semi-structured interviews with 16 of them aged between 21 to 71 years old. The research methodology chosen draws on feminist influences for the framework of the research design whilst also being influenced by narrative perspectives of data collection methods and analysis. The research is described as being a qualitative feminist narrative study. As someone who has a diagnosis of MS this thesis also draws on my own self-ethnography and experiential knowledge. The data were analysed using thematic and narrative analysis. The findings highlighted that the presentation of MS symptoms to GPs were not initially recognised and that a process of mis diagnosis occurred in the majority of cases for a significant period of time with up to 27 years being reported in this study. Further findings indicated that the women in this study were not all provided with choices, options and relevant information in relation to MS. The detailed narratives from the women about their experiences with MS highlighted a journey of personal development and insight into living and adjusting to the symptoms of a chronic illness. The women also offer their own interpretations about the onset of their MS symptoms.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available