Neurologists' lived experiences of communicating the diagnosis of a motor neurodegenerative condition: an interpretative phenomenological analysis

Article


Anestis, E., Eccles, F., Fletcher, I. and Simpson, J. 2023. Neurologists' lived experiences of communicating the diagnosis of a motor neurodegenerative condition: an interpretative phenomenological analysis. BMC Neurology. 23 (1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12883-023-03233-3
TypeArticle
TitleNeurologists' lived experiences of communicating the diagnosis of a motor neurodegenerative condition: an interpretative phenomenological analysis
AuthorsAnestis, E., Eccles, F., Fletcher, I. and Simpson, J.
Abstract

BACKGROUND
Receiving the diagnosis of a motor neurodegenerative condition (MNDC) can be a life-changing experience. Although several studies of individuals' experiences have indicated dissatisfaction with aspects of how an MNDC diagnosis was communicated, few studies have addressed doctors' experiences of breaking bad news for these conditions, especially from a qualitative perspective. This study explored UK neurologists' lived experience of delivering an MNDC diagnosis.
METHODS
Interpretative phenomenological analysis was used as the overarching method. Eight consultant neurologists working with patients with MNDCs took part in individual, semi-structured interviews.
RESULTS
Two themes were constructed from the data: 'Meeting patients' emotional and information needs at diagnosis: a balancing act between disease, patient and organization-related factors', and 'Empathy makes the job harder: the emotional impact and uncovered vulnerabilities associated with breaking bad news'. Breaking the news of an MNDC diagnosis was challenging for participants, both in terms of achieving a patient-centred approach and in terms of dealing with their own emotions during the process.
CONCLUSIONS
Based on the study's findings an attempt to explain sub-optimal diagnostic experiences documented in patient studies was made and how organizational changes can support neurologists with this demanding clinical task was discussed.

KeywordsBreaking bad news, Neurodegenerative conditions, Motor neurone disease, Multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, Doctor-patient communication, Interpretative phenomenological analysis
Sustainable Development Goals3 Good health and well-being
Middlesex University ThemeHealth & Wellbeing
LanguageEnglish
PublisherBioMed Central
JournalBMC Neurology
ISSN1471-2377
Electronic1471-2377
Publication dates
Online03 May 2023
Print03 May 2023
Publication process dates
Deposited23 May 2023
Submitted29 Jan 2023
Accepted29 Apr 2023
Output statusPublished
Publisher's version
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Copyright Statement

Copyright © Crown 2023
Open Access: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated in a credit line to the data.

Web address (URL)https://bmcneurol.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12883-023-03233-3
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1186/s12883-023-03233-3
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