An exploration of patients' memories and experiences of hyperbaric oxygen therapy in a multiplace chamber

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Clinical Nursing, 2007, 16 (8), pp. 1454 - 1459
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Aims and objectives. To examine patients' memories and experiences of hyperbaric oxygen therapy in a multiplace chamber of a hyperbaric medicine unit in Australia. Background. There is minimal literature available documenting patients' feelings and memories of hyperbaric oxygen therapy, particularly in a multiplace chamber. Design. Exploratory. Methods. A convenience sample of seven non-emergency patients was interviewed separately at the conclusion of their multi-session therapy. A semi-structured approach elicited in-depth information regarding their experiences and memories of the hyperbaric oxygen therapy. Interviews were 30-45 minutes long and audiotaped for transcription and analysis. Field notes were also used to note non-verbal cues and other observations not evident from the audio material. Data collection ceased when data saturation was evident from the interviews. Interview transcripts were examined using a content analysis approach, with textual coding and thematic development. Results. Issues derived from the data included: the uncertainty of the treatment; the noise and cold of the chamber; the discomfort of the mask or hood; and the boredom. Participant responses to the therapy related to previous noxious experiences and the individual's personality. Conclusions. This information was used to examine ways of reducing any negative feelings and experiences associated with hyperbaric oxygen therapy, thus improving the service provided to patients. Relevance to clinical practice. Identification of these stressors and related issues may also enable subsequent development of a risk-stratification instrument to predict patients who do not complete treatment. © 2007 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
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