I have mastered the challenge of living with a chronic disease: the life stories of people with rheumatoid arthritis

T. Stamm, L. Lovelock, Graham Stew, V. Nell, J. Smolen, H. Jonsson, Gaynor Sadlo, K. Machold

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Our aim with this study was to explore the narrative life story of individuals diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. An open qualitative approach, namely narrative biographic methodology, was applied to include the life context of the participants and to deliberately exclude predefinitions of concepts. Ten people with rheumatoid arthritis who retired early because of the disease participated and were interviewed three times according to a narrative biographic interview style. The biographical data and the interview texts were analyzed both individually and in comparison to each other. Some participants regarded rheumatoid arthritis as a challenge for mastery in their lives, whereas others adapted to the disease and "made the best out of a bad situation." Especially in countries where the medical model predominates in health care, our findings can be used to broaden the current view that some health professionals have toward patients, and stress the importance of patients being self-responsible.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)658-669
Number of pages12
JournalQualitative Health Research
Volume18
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2008

Keywords

  • rheumatoid arthritis (RA)
  • biographical analysis
  • chronic illness
  • illness and disease
  • experiences
  • stories

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    Stamm, T., Lovelock, L., Stew, G., Nell, V., Smolen, J., Jonsson, H., Sadlo, G., & Machold, K. (2008). I have mastered the challenge of living with a chronic disease: the life stories of people with rheumatoid arthritis. Qualitative Health Research, 18(5), 658-669. https://doi.org/10.1177/1049732308316348