Lived experiences of women with ischemic heart disease

Mahin Moeini, Nayereh Naseri, Ali Zargham-Boroujeni


  • Background: Ischemic heart disease (IHD) is one of the leading causes of death and disability among young and older women, respectively. Researches in this area mostly focused on manifestations, risk factors, and treatment of the patients with IHD. Therefore, there is a lack of information on the aspects of affects and feelings of such patients. This study aimed to describe lived experience of women with IHD to provide a suitable guide for nursing practice.
  • Materials and Methods: This was a descriptive phenomenological study. Participants were 8 women with IHD who were hospitalized in critical care units (CCUs) and ambulatory cardiac care centers of Isfahan University of Medical Sciences in Iran. They voluntarily responded to open-ended questions of semi-structured interviews. Data was analyzed using Colaizzi's method to extract meanings and concepts.
  • Findings: After analyzing the statements of the participants, 14 subthemes forming 5 main concepts of pain and relief, resistance, introversion, loss of control, and mutual communication were emerged.
  • Conclusions: Ischemic heart event is an experience with multidimensional impact on various aspects of the patient's life. This study demonstrated this experience as having 5 fundamental elements. Women with IHD expressed their suffering from frequent cycles of pain that drove their feelings and thoughts toward themselves and provoked their sense of resistance. They also faced loss of control on various aspects of their lives and changes in their relationships with others, too. This image would help nurses design their care plan based on a better understanding of these patients.
  • Key words: Females, qualitative research, ischemic heart disease, life experiences

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