Experiences of hospitalization in patients with multiple sclerosis: A qualitative study

Somayeh Ghafari, Masoud Fallahi-Khoshknab, Kian Norouzi, Eisa Mohamadi




ABSTRACT   Background: Patients with multiple sclerosis experience hospitalization several times in their lives. Certainly, providing efficient and high-quality care by healthcare professionals is not possible unless the experiences of patients’ hospitalization are taken into consideration. This qualitative study was aimed to identify experiences of patients with multiple sclerosis in their hospitalization.

Materials and Methods:A qualitative content analysis method was used to conduct this study. The study participants were 25 patients with multiple sclerosis, who were chosen by purposeful sampling. Data were collected through non-structured interviews. Results: The analysis resulted in the emergence of 4 themes and 11 subthemes. The main themes were: Religiosity, emotional reactions, seeking support, and feeling of being in a cage. Conclusions: 

Awareness of families and healthcare providers of the reactions of patients with multiple sclerosis to hospitalization will help them to deal effectively with patients and to improve relationships with them. However, by understanding the patients’ experiences, the practitioners gain expertise and can join in the patients’ health journey in a therapeutic way during the hospitalization period. In addition, the findings can serve to create a framework for developing nursing care processes including informational and supporting programs for multiple sclerosis patients during hospitalization while taking into consideration patients’ needs and cultural backgrounds. Key words: Content analysis, hospitalization, multiple sclerosis 

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