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The Capital Region of Denmark - a part of Copenhagen University Hospital
E-pub ahead of print

Experience of cardiac tele-rehabilitation: analysis of patient narratives

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Introduction: Research suggests the need for further studies of patients' experiences of cardiac tele-rehabilitation to understand how they adapt to life with heart disease in a program with long-distance contact, remote supervision and monitoring of health behavior. Therefore, the aim of this study was to explore patients' experiences of tele-rehabilitation and the perceived gains of taking part in the program. Materials and methods: Seven patients were interviewed using a phenomenological-hermeneutic approach. Interview transcripts were analyzed as narratives using the interpretation theory of the French philosopher Paul Ricoeur. This involves three levels of textual analysis: a naïve reading as the first interpretation followed by a structural analysis, where the text is explored in detail, before identifying the most significant interpretation through critical interpretation. Results: Patients valued cardiac tele-rehabilitation because it was not restricted to the hospital setting. They felt that the program's flexibility was an advantage because the program could be adjusted to their daily lives. The patients showed greater acknowledgement of and commitment towards the rehabilitation interventions if they were consistent with the patients' self-image, and if the activities were already part of their daily lives. If they were not, they were experienced as an extra challenge. Conclusions: Understanding patients' self-image and prior lifestyle may better inform clinicians about why it can be difficult for patients to follow rehabilitation recommendations. Therefore, clinicians may need to focus more on these two factors to help patients adapt to life with heart disease. IMPLICATIONS FOR REHABILITATION Patients' self-image and prior lifestyle may be important factors for how patients adapt to their new life situation with heart disease within a cardiac tele-rehabilitation program. Patients' commitment to selected rehabilitation interventions may be either too high or too low if it fails to take into consideration their self-image and prior lifestyle. Understanding patients' self-image and prior lifestyle may better inform clinicians and their understanding of why it can be difficult for patients to follow the rehabilitation recommendations.

Original languageEnglish
JournalDisability and rehabilitation
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
ISSN1464-5165
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 12 Jul 2019
Externally publishedYes

ID: 59546697