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Title: A descriptive phenomenological study exploring the experiences of hepatitis C positive adults over time
Author: Hill, Rebekah
ISNI:       0000 0004 2746 4382
Awarding Body: University of East Anglia
Current Institution: University of East Anglia
Date of Award: 2013
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Hepatitis C virus (HCV) is a growing problem affecting thousands of people in the UK. The majority of individuals infected develop chronic liver disease, which can progress to cirrhosis and cancer. Treatment is available for some, but as it is not always successful many people continue to live with the virus in the long term. Experiences of living with hepatitis C are poorly understood yet necessary in order to best meet the need of an increasing number of people who will be living with the disease. Descriptive phenomenology underpinned the design ofthis study which aimed to explore experiences of living with hepatitis C, both for those treated and not treated for the disease over time. A purposeful sample of 23 adults with medically confirmed hepatitis C participated in unstructured interviews, conducted twice over a 9 month period. An analytical framework based on Colaizzi (1978) revealed six themes: HCV and Self; HCV, Self and Others; Self and Handling HCV; Self and Handling HCV Treatment Issues; Living with the Consequences ofHCV and Self, HCV and Thoughts of the Future. For many, diagnosis with HCV can disrupt personal and social identity which triggers a life transition, following which uncertainty exists until a valued self identity is reconstructed. The ability to handle life ~ith HCV, treatment issues, the consequences of living with the disease and its impact on thoughts about the future serve to sustain uncertainty, leaving many failing to make a healthy transition to life with the condition. The understanding reached in this study is important to improve the care of those with hepatitis C, it can enable healthcare provision to focus on supporting individuals with the disease in a chronic care framework which could better facilitate their transition to life with HCV and improve experiences of living with the virus.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available