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Research Article  |   May 2007
The Lived Experience of Recapturing Self-Care
Author Affiliations
  • Susanne Guidetti, MSC, Reg OT, is Doctoral Student, Department of Occupational Therapy, Karolinska University Hospital, Department of Neurobiology, Care Sciences and Society, Division of Occupational Therapy, Karolinska Institutet, Fack 23 200, 141 83 Huddinge, Sweden; susanne.guidetti@ki.se
  • Eric Asaba, PhD, OTR, is Assistant Professor, Department of Neurobiology, Care Sciences and Society, Division of Occupational Therapy, Karolinska Institutet
  • Kerstin Tham, PhD, Reg OT, is Associate Professor, Department of Neurobiology, Care Sciences and Society, Division of Occupational Therapy, Karolinska Institutet
Article Information
Neurologic Conditions / Spinal Cord Injury / Stroke / Lived Experiences of Adults With Physical Dysfunction
Research Article   |   May 2007
The Lived Experience of Recapturing Self-Care
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, May/June 2007, Vol. 61, 303-310. doi:10.5014/ajot.61.3.303
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, May/June 2007, Vol. 61, 303-310. doi:10.5014/ajot.61.3.303
Abstract

This study sought to identify the characteristics of the lived experience of recapturing self-care after a stroke or a spinal cord injury (SCI). Five people who had had a stroke and six with SCI who were in the midst of recapturing self-care (1–3 months after onset) were interviewed. All interviews were analyzed using the Empirical, Phenomenological, and Psychological method. Four main characteristics were present among all of the participants’ lived experiences: (a) becoming familiar with the new body, (b) recapturing self-care through trying, (c) reclaiming control, and (d) feeling uncertainty in the continued recapturing process.

The findings indicate that a prerequisite for recapturing self-care was to get experience from doing to become familiar with the new body, which makes explicit the importance of enabling self-care in the rehabilitation process after stroke or SCI. The findings can be used in clinical practice to improve the understanding of how to better plan individualized self-care intervention.