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Title: Experiences with people with Parkinson's disease : a qualitative approach
Author: Casey, Helen
Awarding Body: Lancaster University
Current Institution: Lancaster University
Date of Award: 2012
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People with Parkinson's disease (PD) often experience psychological difficulties. Typically the psychological difficulties associated with PD are conceptualised within neurobiological models. The first aim of this thesis was to explore an alternative conceptualisation of psychological difficulties in PD as a contrast to the individualistic medical model. Therefore a narrative literature review adopting a social model of disability perspective was conducted. This review used the concept of psycho-emotional disablism (Thomas, 2007) to explore the social barriers and stigma surrounding PD, and how this may contribute to psychological distress. The review highlights the need to broaden current conceptualisations of psychological distress experienced by people with PD and advocates for further research and clinical focus on the social barriers faced by people with PD. The second aim of this thesis was to explore how people with PD experience apathy. Apathy has become a focus in PD research, although it is predominantly conceptualised and researched from a neurobiological perspective (Bogart, 2011). Therefore, a qualitative exploration of experiences of apathy was conducted with seven participants with PD, using semi structured interviews and interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA). Participants' experiences of apathy were captured in three themes: 1) "The apathy creeps into jobs that I used to be able to do and no longer can do": Reduced motivation in response to the consequences of impairment; 2) "I hate at the end of the day if I've achieved nothing": The (un)acceptability of apathy; 3) "They say 'come on you lazy bugger, get something done"': The social context of apathy. These themes offer insight into psychosocial processes associated with apathy in PD. The final section of the thesis offers further reflections on the research process, such as some methodological challenges that were experienced.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available