Background: Stoma creation is a surgical operation where the surgeon makes an artificial opening on the abdomen from where the bowel is taken out. It is a radical treatment with permanent physical signs of bodily change. In general, it leads to loss of a central and personal physical function, as well as an alteration in the bodily design. Research in the field may provide additional information about central elements when adapting to life with a stoma. There are currently no studies that adequately focus on the relationship between health-related quality of life and stoma construction in a Danish context, neither for temporary or permanent construction, nor in relation to the importance of stoma handling. Purpose: The overall objective of the study was to investigate health-related quality of life related to stoma creation and patient education. Methodologically, the project was implemented as a mixed methods study in which qualitative interview studies and two systematic literature reviews identified interventions, which were subsequently tested in a clinical case/control study. Finally the case/control study was made subject to an economic analysis. The project is based on 6 papers reporting the results. Article 1: Impact of a temporary stoma on patients everyday-lives: feelings of uncertainty while waiting for closure of the stoma. The study included 7 participants who were interviewed in focus groups. The results indicated that patients experienced a high degree of uncertainty in connection with the stoma being temporary. At the same time, participants had a strong need to control both their physical appearance and their changed bodily functions. Participants opted for education programs involving teachers with a stoma. Article 2: Learning to live with a Permanent Intestinal Ostomy: Impact on everyday life and Educational Needs. The study included 15 participants who were interviewed in groups related to whether they were treated for cancer or non-cancer. The results showed that participants often experienced the stoma as a taboo, and emotions related to stigma were identified. In addition, participants were influenced by the stoma in various ways, and the stoma imposed some restrictions on the participants. Participants pointed at group-based education, as well as the involvement of teachers who had a stoma. Article 3: Spouses of patients with a stoma lack information and support and are restricted in their social and sexual life: a systematic review. The study included 6 articles based on quantitative and qualitative data showing that spouses were affected in several ways by the construction of the stoma. The results pointed at spouses not being informed and supported sufficiently by neither enterostoma therapists or surgeons. Article 4: Patient education has a positive effect in patients with a stoma - a systematic review The study included 7 studies, all with quantitative results. They showed that patient education had a positive impact in several areas including shorter hospital stay, less time until proficiency in stoma management is reached, an increase in quality of life, increased knowledge about the stoma, and increased self-efficacy. Article 5: Health-related quality of life increases when patients with a stoma attend patient education - a case/control study. The study included 50 participants shortly after stoma creation. The results showed that the disease-specific quality of life was significantly increased in the intervention group, while generic health-related quality of life was positively affected in different dimensions in both groups. Article 6: Decreased costs with patient education after stoma creation. The study was an economic analysis based on participants in Article 5. The results indicated that there were fewer unplanned re-admissions related to the stoma, and that patients in the intervention group did not visit the general practitioner as much as patients in the control group. Furthermore, we found that the average cost per patient did not increase when establishing a patient education program. Conclusion: The thesis concludes that patient education has a positive impact on patients' quality of life, and that costs are reduced. At the same time, it is concluded that living with a stoma is a complex situation, which also involves spouses and close relatives, and that patient education must be based on multiple interventions that are not all explored in this project.
|Danish Medical Bulletin (Online)
|Udgivet - okt. 2013