Illuminate meanings of living with [or close to someone with] an enterocutaneous fistula before and after reconstructive surgery.
Enterocutaneous fistula is a serious condition affecting the well-being and social life of both patients and families, sometimes for several years.
A longitudinal qualitative design.
Patients and families (n = 14) were followed with dyadic interviews at three occasions, conducted 2017–2020. The interviews were analysed with a phenomenological-hermeneutic approach. COREQ guidelines were followed.
Living with an enterocutaneous fistula was explained as life being put on hold, while living in a bubble for an uncertain time. This bubble meant facing an unpredictable and restricted life where the dyads were forced to take control over the situation despite being vulnerable inside, striving to resume normality. The patients dealt with never-ending symptoms such as leakage from the fistula, pain and fatigue, while the family supported with practical matters and just being close. Dependency on intravenous fluids resulted in social isolation, which caused mode swings and depressiveness. In this situation, healthcare professionals often became a substitute for other interactions, but the lack of understanding about the dyads' situation, affected their trust in the healthcare. Despite all, they still had belief in the future, the patients having higher expectations than the family.
Living with an enterocutaneous fistula meant a daily life struggling with many limitations. This implies that the transition was associated with difficulties and the dyads strived to accept their situation.
The findings indicate that these patients must be cared for with a multidisciplinary approach. A person-centred health plan could impact on the dyads' feeling of control and thereby making them less dependent on healthcare. Every patient should have their own contact nurse and be offered psychological support.
Not applicable due to the current method.
The aim of the study was to evaluate the usability of the COPE Index in the assessment of subjective caregiving burden of family caregivers providing care for older people in their home environment.
A cross-sectional study was conducted among 110 family caregivers. The criterion of including caregivers in the study was their provision of care at home for an older person who needed and received regular long-term nursing care in their home environment. The study was carried out using the COPE Index questionnaire in assessing the situation of family caregivers. The study was reported according to the STROBE checklist.
The mean result of assessment of negative impact of care in the studied group of caregivers was 16.5 ± SD 3.0, positive impact of care – 10.4 ± SD 2.8 and the quality of support – 9.2 ± SD 1.8. A higher level of caregiving burden was found in 58.2% caregivers. The vast majority of the caregivers were women (83.6%). The care was most often provided by the elderly people's children (51.0%), less often by spouses (17.0%), siblings (10.0%), grandchildren (10.0%) and paid caregivers (10.0%).
The COPE Index proved to be a useful instrument for routine application in home environment to identify care deficits. Greater caregiving burden of family caregivers of disabled older persons was associated with a higher number of nights devoted to care, growing limitations on professional life, choice to provide care, the caregiver's emotional state, the lack of support in the caregiving role, support from family members and the state of cognitive functions of the care recipient.
This study may help identify and characterise the profile of family caregivers who are at risk of caregiving burden, and can be used to apply well-designed activities aimed at reducing their suffering and providing them support.
This cross-sectional study aimed to describe cancer-related fatigue (CRF) in colorectal cancer (CRC) patients who were surgically treated with curative intent, identify subgroups at risk of elevated fatigue levels and explore associations between CRF and treatment burden.
CRF is a prominent symptom among cancer patients. In patients treated for CRC, CRF is associated with adjuvant treatments, low quality of life and reduced ability to self-manage.
One hundred thirty-four patients with CRC treated at a Norwegian university hospital between 2016–2018 were included. The Schwartz Cancer Fatigue Scale-6 and the Patient Experience with Treatment and Self-management questionnaires were applied for data collection. Statistical analyses included descriptive statistics and non-parametric approaches to analyse correlations and identify differences between groups. The study adhered to STROBE Statement checklist for reporting of cross-sectional studies.
Median fatigue level was 10.0 (range: 7.0–13.0). Physical fatigue was higher than perceptual fatigue, with medians of 6.0 (interquartile range [IQR]: 3.0–13.0) and 4.0 (IQR: 3.0–12.0), respectively. Higher fatigue levels were associated with age <60 years, advanced cancer and adjuvant treatments. Increased CRF was significantly associated with higher treatment burden on seven of the nine dimensions, adjusted for demographic and clinical variables. The association of fatigue and treatment burden was stronger in survivors <60 years, with advanced cancer, 6–12 months since surgery or who had more comorbid conditions.
This study showed patients at risk of experiencing CRF following CRC treatment. It established proof of associations between CRF and treatment burden and identified subgroups of CRC patients where this association was stronger.
Screening of CRF in CRC patients can help clinicians provide individualized treatment and care to manage CRF. Clinicians should consider the association between CRF and treatment burden, especially in subgroups of CRF patients.
To explore barriers to hepatocellular carcinoma screening among patients with hepatitis B.
Hepatitis B-related hepatocellular carcinoma is a major cause of cancer-related mortality globally. A preventive strategy for screening is needed to improve early tumour detection and overall survival. However, utilisation remains suboptimal and barriers are understudied and largely focused on clinical factors.
A qualitative study based on the preventive health model using phenomenological hermeneutical approach.
Face-to-face semi-structured interviews were conducted with 23 hepatitis B patients from November 2020 to February 2021. Interpretative phenomenological analysis was used. The COREQ checklist was followed.
Four themes were identified: (i) miscognition, (ii) cultural stigma and taboo, (iii) social norms of enduring hardship and (iv) social barriers at the community, health system and policy levels. Patients had misconceptions about inactive carriers, asymptomatic nature of chronic hepatitis B, hepatocellular carcinoma risks and screening recommendations. Influenced by the taboo of hepatocellular carcinoma, stigma against hepatitis B and enduring hardship norms, they perceived screening as divination, avoided utilisation to hide disease status and endured symptoms until they were intolerable. Insufficient community support, a lack of shared decision-making in health systems, and inadequate rural reimbursement policy and hepatocellular carcinoma detection capacity further precluded utilisation.
Cognitive and sociocultural barriers precluded individuals’ intention, utilisation and persistence of hepatocellular carcinoma screening. The results highlight intervention targets for miscognition, stigma, taboo and social norms; propose family-focused, community-based education programs; suggest health systems to introduce decision aids; and inform policymaking and upskilling of physicians in rural areas.
Collaborative efforts are needed to improve real-world hepatocellular carcinoma screening, including education to address knowledge deficiencies, psychological counselling to reduce stigma and taboo beliefs, support for shared decision-making and reimbursement policies.
This study was designed to investigate the feasibility, acceptability, and preliminary efficacy of a nurse-led communication intervention among surrogates in the intensive care unit (ICU) guided by the COMFORT (Connect; Options; Making meaning; Family caregivers; Openings; Relating; Team) communication model.
As frontline communicators, nurses experience communication difficulties with surrogates who face complex informational and emotional barriers when making decisions for critically ill patients in the ICU. However, research on effective nurse communication focusing on both curative and end-of-life (EOL) care is lacking in the literature.
A single-centre two-group pretest-posttest quasi-experiment.
The total sample included 41 surrogates of adult ventilated patients. Twenty participants were allocated to the intervention group who received a daily 20-min telephone call with content based on the COMFORT communication model. Twenty-one participants comprised the control group who received usual care. Participants completed a questionnaire before and after the study measuring satisfaction, anxiety and depression, decisional conflict, and quality of communication. The Transparent Reporting of Evaluations with Nonrandomized Designs (TREND) checklist was followed for nonrandomised controlled trials.
The intervention was feasible, with 19 of 20 surrogates completing the follow-up surveys, and 48 telephone conversations completed (48% of the planned phone calls). Surrogates' satisfaction was higher in the intervention group than in the control group after adjusting for the selected covariates (25.43 and 24.15, respectively; p = .512). Preliminary efficacy outcomes favouring the intervention included quality of communication with healthcare providers, but not surrogates' perceived depression/anxiety and decisional conflicts.
Implementation of the intervention is feasible, acceptable, and favourable among surrogates to improve quality of communication with healthcare providers in the ICU. Further research is needed to determine whether the intervention could be implemented by nurses to improve surrogates' outcomes in other ICUs.
This study aimed to explore staff attitudes and experiences of parents' friends and families' social presence and involvement in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs).
In NICUs, parents need emotional and practical support during infant hospitalisation. Friends and families of parents may constitute the most significant providers in this support, but few studies are available on when and how these ‘important others’ can be present and involved.
This qualitative descriptive study was based in the philosophical tenets of naturalistic inquiry.
Seven focus groups were conducted where 67 staff from Denmark, Finland, Iceland and Sweden participated. Data were analysed using thematic analysis. The study was reported following the COREQ guidelines and checklist.
The overarching theme showed that ‘important others’ were an unaddressed group of potential supporters in the periphery. The five identified themes described how staff recognised ‘important others’ as the parents' territory, but that ‘important others'’ presence and involvement needed to be negotiated with staff. Although the staff regarded ‘important others’ as necessary for parents' emotional, practical and social support, they felt less obligated to support them as part of their work remit. The staff also felt that inclusion of ‘important others’ was an essential step forward in achieving family centred care.
The findings indicate that ‘important others'’ involvement was primarily guided by proactive parents and unit care culture rather than by staff's formal written guidelines or guidance. Single-family rooms seemed to enhance the presence and involvement of ‘important others’.
There is a need for more staff resources to enable and support the participation of ‘important others’. Parents need to be included during the development of policies to provide their experiences. Finally, more research is needed on what parents wish from their ‘important others’.
To explore hospital nurses’ experience assessing changes in the health status of stem-cell transplanted patients in home care (HC).
Stem-cell transplanted patients in HC are treated at home instead of in hospital wards. Hospital nurses visit patients daily and play a key role in assessing the patients’ health status. Previous studies on HC for stem-cell transplanted patients focus mainly on safety in HC versus hospital care. No studies regarding nurses’ experience assessing patients’ health status at home when patients undergo stem-cell transplantation were found.
Qualitative study with an explorative design.
Data were collected via 14 individual semi-structured interviews with hospital nurses working with stem-cell transplanted patients in HC. Data were analysed using systematic text condensation. The reporting of the study was guided by the COREQ checklist.
Three categories emerged from the data analysis: 1) Effective communication and clinical intuition enhances the assessment of patients’ general health condition; 2) It is challenging to rely on one's own judgment in remote assessment; and 3) There are key facilitators in performing remote clinical assessments.
Effective communication and clinical intuition enhanced the assessment of patients’ general health conditions. The lack of physical presence during remote assessments made using clinical intuition in the assessment process difficult. Experience with hematopoietic stem-cell transplantation was seen as important to facilitate accurate remote clinical assessments.
Nurses with responsibility for hospital at-home telephone care should receive training in remote communication and should shadow hospital at-home nurses during in home visits to gain experience assessing patients’ health status. Telehealth aspects such as videoconferencing and remote patient monitoring should be considered for more accurate remote assessment. This could potentially result in more effective assessments and reduced readmissions and could promote nurses’ confidence in their assessments.
To evaluate the impact of the professional transition of new graduate nurses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The transition from the role of student to the professional role can be challenging for new graduate nurses for the acquisition of higher autonomy and responsibility. The COVID-19 pandemic impacted the quality of the professional transition.
This was a cross-sectional observational study following the Strengthening and Reporting of Observational Studies in Epidemiology checklist.
One hundred and two nurses who graduated in three consecutive sessions (November 2019—pre-pandemic, March 2020—pandemic outbreak, and November 2020—2nd wave) in a north Italian university located in the most affected Italian region by the COVID-19 pandemic, completed an online survey assessing well-being, risk of burnout, resilience, perceived stigma, strengths and limitations and quality of the professional transition. The study was performed between March and May 2021.
81.4% of participants described the professional transition as worse than expected, and new graduate nurses who worked in COVID-19 settings reported a more difficult transition to professional life. No differences emerged in burnout, mental well-being and perceived stigma between new graduate nurses who worked in COVID-19 settings and those who did not. Similarly, no differences emerged amongst the three graduated cohort sessions. The most commonly mentioned challenges faced during the transition were organisational aspects, suddenly acquired autonomy and lack of suitable coaching.
New graduate nurses reported a challenging academic-professional transition, in particular, those who worked in COVID-19 settings. The mid- and long-term impact of experiencing an academic-professional transition in COVID-19 settings should be assessed and monitored.
The professional transition of new graduate students should be adequately planned and monitored, new graduates should be assisted to develop realistic expectations about the transition, and an adequate coaching period should be guaranteed all the more during health emergencies.
Tracheostomy dislodgment can lead to catastrophic neurological injury or death. A fresh tracheostomy amplifies the risk of such events, where an immature tract predisposes to false passage. Unfortunately, few resources exist to prepare healthcare professionals to manage this airway emergency.
To create and implement an accidental tracheostomy dislodgement (ATD) bundle to improve knowledge and comfort when responding to ATD.
A multidisciplinary team with expertise in tracheostomy developed a 3-part ATD bundle including (1) Tracheostomy Dislodgement Algorithm, (2) Head of Bed Tracheostomy Communication Tool and (3) Emergency Tracheostomy Kit. The team tested the bundle during the COVID-19 pandemic in a community hospital critical care unit with the engagement of nurses and Respiratory Care Practitioners. Baseline and post-implementation knowledge and comfort levels were measured using Dorton's Tracheotomy Education Self-Assessment Questionnaire, and adherence to protocol was assessed. Reporting follows the revised Standards for Quality Improvement Reporting Excellence (SQUIRE).
Twenty-four participants completed pre-test and post-test questionnaires. The median knowledge score on the Likert scale increased from 4.0 (IQR = 1.0) pre-test to 5.0 (IQR = 1.0) post-test. The median comfort level score increased from 38.0 (IQR = 7.0) pre-test to 40.0 (IQR = 5.0) post-test). In patient rooms, adherence was 100% for the Head of Bed Tracheostomy Communication Tool and Emergency Tracheostomy Kit. The adherence rate for using the Dislodgement Algorithm was 55% in ICU and 40% in SCU.
This study addresses the void of tracheostomy research conducted in local community hospitals. The improvement in knowledge and comfort in managing ATD is reassuring, given the knowledge gap among practitioners demonstrated in prior literature. The ATD bundle assessed in this study represents a streamlined approach for bedside clinicians – definitive management of ATD should adhere to comprehensive multidisciplinary guidelines.
ATD bundle implementation increased knowledge and comfort levels with managing ATD. Further studies must assess whether ATD bundles and other standardised approaches to airway emergencies reduce adverse events.
A streamlined intervention bundle employed at the unit level can significantly improve knowledge and comfort in managing ATD, which may reduce morbidity and mortality in critically ill patients with tracheostomy.
The study aimed to determine the impact of clinical nurses' experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic on their learning agility and readiness for other future pandemics.
It is important that nurses have high learning agility so they can successfully adapt their experience to COVID-19 and other pandemics that may occur in the future. This will positively affect the readiness of nurses to fight against possible future pandemics.
The study is cross-sectional, descriptive, correlational research.
The study was carried outby data collection from 383 nurses. Data were collected via online survey using social media. The study methods were followed by the STORBE guidelines.
The average score of nurses on the Marmara Learning Agility Scale was 4.07 ± .030. The level of readiness of nurses for new pandemics was 96.1%. Positive but weak correlations were found between the effect of nurses' experiences in the COVID-19 pandemic with their readiness for potential future pandemics and their learning agility.
It was observed that nurses have high learning agility, gained experience during the COVID-19 pandemic and these experiences affected their readiness for other potential future pandemics.
Health institutions to develop learning agility to support career management, manager selection and performance improvement for clinical nurses.
To determine the frequency, timing, and duration of post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection (PASC) and their impact on health and function.
Post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection is an emerging major public health problem that is poorly understood and has no current treatment or cure. PASC is a new syndrome that has yet to be fully clinically characterised.
Descriptive cross-sectional survey (n = 5163) was conducted from online COVID-19 survivor support groups who reported symptoms for more than 21 days following SARS-CoV-2 infection.
Participants reported background demographics and the date and method of their covid diagnosis, as well as all symptoms experienced since onset of covid in terms of the symptom start date, duration, and Likert scales measuring three symptom-specific health impacts: pain and discomfort, work impairment, and social impairment. Descriptive statistics and measures of central tendencies were computed for participant demographics and symptom data.
Participants reported experiencing a mean of 21 symptoms (range 1–93); fatigue (79.0%), headache (55.3%), shortness of breath (55.3%) and difficulty concentrating (53.6%) were the most common. Symptoms often remitted and relapsed for extended periods of time (duration M = 112 days), longest lasting symptoms included the inability to exercise (M = 106.5 days), fatigue (M = 101.7 days) and difficulty concentrating, associated with memory impairment (M = 101.1 days). Participants reported extreme pressure at the base of the head, syncope, sharp or sudden chest pain, and “brain pressure” among the most distressing and impacting daily life.
Post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection can be characterised by a wide range of symptoms, many of which cause moderate-to-severe distress and can hinder survivors' overall well-being.
This study advances our understanding of the symptoms of PASC and their health impacts.
Changed behaviours in residential aged care facilities (RACF) are frequently reported in the literature. How RACF staff routinely respond to these observed changed behaviours represents a significant gap.
To analyse the frequency of changed behaviour reported within RACF behavioural report logs and to ascertain how staff typically manage these behaviours.
Residents (N = 25) with varying levels of cognitive function were recruited from a 160 bed RACF in Queensland, Australia. A retrospective analysis of behavioural report logs was conducted to elucidate prevalence of reported changed behaviours as categorised by RACF staff. Thematic analysis of staff recorded behavioural mitigation strategies was used to categorise staff actions. A case analysis was also conducted to highlight the challenges faced by RACF staff managing persistent acute changed behaviours using identified common mitigation strategies. The STROBE guidelines were followed for reporting.
There were 395 behaviours recorded in a two-month period. Physical agitation, interfering while wandering, trying to get to inappropriate places, verbal refusal of care, physical aggression, and verbal disruption were most frequently reported by staff. Management strategies included redirection, PRN psychotropic medication, reassurance, routine care practices, offering of beverages, repositioning, and rarely analgesia. A 24-h case analysis highlighted how staff utilised redirection and multiple doses of a PRN benzodiazepine with limited effectiveness.
This study reveals current mitigation strategies employed by RACF staff in response to acute changed behaviours often associated with dementia. Agitation and wandering are prevalent and are difficult for staff to manage effectively.
This study highlights that careful consideration should be taken to avoid overuse of PRN benzodiazepines in management of changed behaviours. Short-term mitigation strategies, such as redirection, may not be effective if underlying causes such as pain, physiological, mental, emotional, or social needs are not met.
A RACF participated in project design and review.
A range of psychological issues often accompany breast cancer chemotherapy. Due to their ubiquity, mobile phones have been used to deliver supportive interventions addressing these issues. However, we currently lack sufficient evidence to guide the design of such interventions.
To analyse and synthesise available evidence on the effectiveness of mobile-phone-based (mHealth) interventions in alleviating the psychological issues experienced by women receiving chemotherapy for breast cancer.
A systematic literature search was conducted from 14 relevant databases. Revman 5.4 was used to pool the quantitative results from comparable studies for statistical meta-analysis. For clinically heterogeneous studies where statistical pooling of results was not possible, a narrative summary was used to present the findings.
The review included nine RCTs which covered 1457 patients. The meta-analysis results indicated a significant improvement in the quality of life (standardised mean difference [SMD] = 0.32, 95% confidence interval [CI] [0.07, 0.58], p = .01, I 2 = 17%). No significant effects were found for anxiety (SMD = −0.01, 95% CI [−0.26, 0.25], p = .96, I 2 = 53%) and depression (SMD = 0.02, 95% CI [−0.17, 0.20], p = .87, I 2 = 0%). Individual studies suggest reduced symptom prevalence (p = .033, d = 0.27), symptom distress (p = .004, d = 0.34), symptom interference (p = .02, d = 0.51), supportive care needs (p < .05, d = 2.43); improved self-efficacy (p = .03, d = 0.53), self-esteem (p < .001, d = 0.87) and emotional functioning (p = .008, d = 0.30). The methodological quality ranged from low to moderate.
mHealth interventions might help address certain psychological issues experienced by this population, although the evidence is still being gathered and not yet conclusive. More rigorous trials are warranted to confirm the suitable duration while addressing the methodological flaws found in previous studies.
To investigate the relationship of the implementation of a nurse-led high-flow nasal cannula oxygen protocol on the clinical outcomes of infants with bronchiolitis in a regional paediatric unit.
Bronchiolitis is a common lower respiratory illness and is the leading cause for hospitalisation of infants globally. Standard care involves the provision of supportive measures. Historically, supplemental oxygen was provided by low-flow nasal cannula. High-flow nasal cannula oxygen has been increasingly adopted despite limited evidence of its efficacy.
This study employed non-equivalent, post-implementation only design to explore clinical outcomes of infants with bronchiolitis admitted for high-flow nasal cannula oxygen therapy. The study compared infants in the 24 months before and after the initiation of a high-flow nasal cannula protocol. The primary clinical outcome was length of stay, secondary outcomes included time on high flow, weaning time, escalation of care and time outside of physiological parameters. Implementation strategy evaluation was measured by compliance with applying the protocol, reported as episodes of variance, and duration of variance. The StaRI checklist was selected as the most appropriate reporting guideline.
A total of 80 patients were admitted with bronchiolitis and received high-flow nasal cannula oxygen therapy during a 48-month period; 37 patients were prior, and 43 after, the introduction of a nurse-led high-flow nasal cannula protocol. Length of stay was significantly reduced in the post-implementation group compared to the historical control group (83.8 vs. 61.3 h). Time on high flow and weaning time was decreased in the post-implementation group compared to the control group (33.5 vs. 26.7 h and 26 vs.12.25 h, respectively); however, these did not reach statistical significance. There was varied application of the HFNC protocol.
The implementation of a nurse-led high-flow nasal cannula protocol was associated with a reduced length of stay.
This study demonstrated that infants with bronchiolitis that were treated with a nurse-led high-flow nasal cannula (HFNC) therapy protocol had positive effects on clinical outcomes including a shorter length of stay than compared with those with physician-directed care in a regional paediatric unit. A weight-based (2 L/kg) HFNC therapy was safely administered to infants with bronchiolitis in a regional hospital paediatric ward with no paediatric intensive care unit (PICU).