Psychosocial impact of intestinal failure: a familial perspective.

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    • Abstract:
      Intestinal failure is a complicated long-term condition that can have profound physical and psychosocial consequences for a patient's life. Hospitalisation can be long, with many distressing and unpleasant medical procedures being endured. Patients often have to deal with large volumes of unmanageable faecal fluid from stomas or fistulae and usually require home parenteral nutrition (HPN) for the remainder of their life. The literature focuses on how patients often have to tolerate long periods of suffering, which can be the basis for significant emotional anguish. It also addresses how the condition can contribute to myriad psychosocial difficulties, which can have devastating effects on their body image and quality of life. However, there is a lack of information regarding the effects of this condition on the family, who not only have to provide ongoing support for the patient, but also have to attempt to function normally while coping with their own fears and emotions. This article reviews the experiences of two patients, father and daughter, living with intestinal failure; it discusses their experiences and reveals how they cope with the physical aspects. It also addresses how the condition can effect psychosocial disturbances, not only for them but for those living closely with them. The article addresses ways that nurses could develop their relationship with the patient, enabling them to recognise and act early on signs of emotional malady. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
    • Abstract:
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