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Caswell, Glenys; Seymour, Jane; Crosby, Vincent; Hussain, Asmah; Manderson, Cathann; Farnan, Sarah; Freer, Sarah; Freemantle, Alison; Littlewood, Fran; Wilcock, Andrew (2017)
Publisher: Springer
Languages: English
Types: Article

Classified by OpenAIRE into

mesheuropmc: humanities
Purpose\ud \ud Compared to others, patients diagnosed with lung cancer following an emergency, unplanned admission to hospital (DFEA) have more advanced disease and poorer prognosis. Little is known about DFEA patients’ beliefs about cancer and its symptoms or about their help-seeking behaviours prior to admission.\ud Methods\ud \ud As part of a larger single-centre, prospective mixed-methods study conducted in one University hospital, we undertook qualitative interviews with patients DFEA and their carers to obtain their understanding of symptoms and experiences of trying to access healthcare services before admission to hospital. Interviews were recorded and transcribed. Framework analysis was employed.\ud Results\ud \ud Thirteen patients and 10 carers plus 3 bereaved carers took part in interviews. Three patient/carer dyads were interviewed together. Participants spoke about their symptoms and why they did not seek help sooner. They described complex and nuanced experiences. Some (n = 12) had what they recalled as the wrong symptoms for lung cancer and attributed them either to a pre-existing condition or to ageing. In other cases (n = 9), patients or carers realised with hindsight that their symptoms were signs of lung cancer, but at the time had made other attributions to account for them. In some cases (n = 3), a sudden onset of symptoms was reported. Some GPs (n = 6) were also reported to have made incorrect attributions about cause.\ud Conclusion\ud \ud Late diagnosis meant that patients DFEA needed palliative support sooner after diagnosis than patients not DFEA. Professionals and lay people interpret health and illness experiences differently.

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