Disrupted biographies: making sense of minor stroke after hospital discharge
Finch, E., Foster, M. & Fleming, J.
Purpose: To explore how people with minor stroke make sense of the stroke in the first weeks following hospital discharge to home.
Materials and Methods: A qualitative descriptive approach using semi-structured interviews with 17 participants with minor stroke at approximately 2 weeks post-hospital discharge was used to explore their experiences of the early stage of recovery. Interview transcripts were analysed using qualitative content analysis.
Results: Three main themes were derived from the analysis 1) Reconciling personal reactions, 2) Emotional introspection after the stroke, and 3) Navigating the social side of stroke.
Conclusions: Although participants had different experiences of minor stroke, there were common elements. The first weeks post-hospital discharge were a time of questioning and reconciling the stroke for many participants. Adjusting to post-stroke impairments and the impact of these on social participation was also prominent. There is a critical need for education about what to expect prior to discharge from hospital with minor stroke and a designated discharge pathway to avoid the development of secondary post-stroke issues in the community.