Critical care research: weaving a body-mind-spirit tapestry.
Master weavers historically characterize the weaving of a tapestry as a calling, a transformation, a healing or sacred work. Tapestries are created by the collective efforts of many and are configured by the weavers' consciousness and spirit. A holistic framework used to weave a body-mind-spirit tapestry for guiding holistic clinical practice and research is described. Various research studies that document the effects of holistic interventions on patients' outcomes are examined. Implications for clinical practice are explored. (+info)
The perceived meaning of a (w)holistic view among general practitioners and district nurses in Swedish primary care: a qualitative study.
BACKGROUND: The definition of primary care varies between countries. Swedish primary care has developed from a philosophic viewpoint based on quality, accessibility, continuity, co-operation and a holistic view. The meaning of holism in international literature differs between medicine and nursing. The question is, if the difference is due to different educational traditions. Due to the uncertainties in defining holism and a holistic view we wished to study, in depth, how holism is perceived by doctors and nurses in their clinical work. Thus, the aim was to explore the perceived meaning of a holistic view among general practitioners (GPs) and district nurses (DNs). METHODS: Seven focus group interviews with a purposive sample of 22 GPs and 20 nurses working in primary care in two Swedish county councils were conducted. The interviews were transcribed verbatim and analysed using qualitative content analysis. RESULTS: The analysis resulted in three categories, attitude, knowledge, and circumstances, with two, two and four subcategories respectively. A professional attitude involves recognising the whole person; not only fragments of a person with a disease. Factual knowledge is acquired through special training and long professional experience. Tacit knowledge is about feelings and social competence. Circumstances can either be barriers or facilitators. A holistic view is a strong motivator and as such it is a facilitator. The way primary care is organised can be either a barrier or a facilitator and could influence the use of a holistic approach. Defined geographical districts and care teams facilitate a holistic view with house calls being essential, particularly for nurses. In preventive work and palliative care, a holistic view was stated to be specifically important. Consultations and communication with the patient were seen as important tools. CONCLUSION: 'Holistic view' is multidimensional, well implemented and very much alive among both GPs and DNs. The word holistic should really be spelled 'wholistic' to avoid confusion with complementary and alternative medicine. It was obvious that our participants were able to verbalize the meaning of a 'wholistic' view through narratives about their clinical, every day work. The possibility to implement a 'wholistic' perspective in their work with patients offers a strong motivation for GPs and DNs. (+info)
The brief serenity scale: a psychometric analysis of a measure of spirituality and well-being.
Biofeedback therapy for faecal incontinence: a rural and regional perspective.
INTRODUCTION: Faecal incontinence is the involuntary loss of liquid or solid stool with or without the patient's awareness. It affects 8-11% of Australian community dwelling adults and up to 72% of nursing home residents with symptoms causing embarrassment, loss of self-respect and possible withdrawal from normal daily activities. Biofeedback, a technique used to increase patient awareness of physiological processes not normally considered to be under voluntary control, is a safe, conservative first-line therapy that has been shown to reduce symptom severity and improve patient quality of life. The Townsville Hospital, a publicly funded regional hospital with a large rural catchment area, offers anorectal biofeedback for patients with faecal incontinence, constipation and chronic pelvic pain. The aim of this report is to describe the effect of the biofeedback treatment on the wellbeing of regional and rural participants in a study of biofeedback treatment for faecal incontinence in the Townsville Hospital clinic. METHODS: There were 53 regional (14 male) and 19 rural (5 male) participants (mean age 62.1 years) enrolled in a biofeedback study between January 2005 and October 2006. The program included 4 sessions one week apart, 4 weeks home practice of techniques learnt and a final follow-up reassessment session. Session one included documenting relevant history, diet, fibre, and fluid intake and treatment goals; anorectal function and proctometrographic measurements were assessed. Patients were taught relaxation (diaphragmatic) breathing in session two with a rectal probe and the balloon inserted, prior to inflating the balloon to sensory threshold. In session three, patients were taught anal sphincter and pelvic floor exercises linking the changes in anal pressures seen on the computer monitor with the exercises performed and sensations felt. Session four included improving anal and pelvic floor exercises, learning a defecation technique and receiving instructions for 4 weeks home practice. At the fifth session, home practice and bowel charts were reviewed and anorectal function was reassessed. Symptom severity and quality of life were assessed by surveying participants prior to sessions one and two and following session five. Patients were interviewed after session five to determine their satisfaction with the therapy and the helpfulness of individual program components. They were mailed a follow-up survey 2 years later. RESULTS: Regional participants lived within 30 min drive of the clinic (median distance 8 km) while rural participants travelled up to 903 km (median 339 km, p<0.001) to attend the clinic. Faecal Incontinence risk factors were similar for rural and regional participants. Rural participants reported poorer general health (p=0.004) and their symptoms affected their lifestyle more negatively (p=0.028). Participants' incontinence (p<0.001) and quality of life (p<0.001) improved significantly over the treatment period. Improvement for rural participants over the course of treatment was marginally better than that of regional participants, although not significantly. More than 97% of patients reported that the biofeedback program was very/extremely helpful and all participants attending the final session reported that they would advise a friend in a similar situation not to wait, but seek help immediately, with more than half specifically citing the biofeedback program. Two years later regional participants' symptoms and quality of life continued to improve while rural participants' quality of life had regressed to pre-treatment levels. CONCLUSIONS: For equivalent long term improvement in faecal continence and quality of life to be achieved in both regional and rural participants, an additional follow-up session with the biofeedback therapist, ongoing local support provided by continence advisors, or both, should be investigated for rural patients. (+info)
Guided imagery as a treatment option for fatigue: a literature review.
Cost savings in inpatient oncology through an integrative medicine approach.
OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the cost impact of an integrative medicine intervention on an inpatient oncology service. STUDY DESIGN: This study used nonrandomized, nonequivalent groups. A baseline sample of inpatient oncology patients at Beth Israel Medical Center admitted to the medical oncology unit before implementation of the Urban Zen Initiative were compared with patients admitted after the Urban Zen Initiative was in place. METHODS: The Urban Zen Initiative incorporated yoga therapy, holistic nursing techniques, and a "healing environment" into routine inpatient oncology care. Length of stay and medication use data were extracted from Beth Israel's decision support electronic database. We compared length of stay, total medication costs, and costs of as-needed medications for both groups: the baseline sample of inpatient oncology patients and patients exposed to the Urban Zen healing environment initiative. RESULTS: We had complete cost data on 85 patients in our baseline group and 72 in our intervention group. We found no difference in length of stay between the 2 groups. We found a significant decrease in use of antiemetic, anxiolytic, and hypnotic medication costs as well as a decrease in total medication costs in the Urban Zen sample compared with the baseline group. CONCLUSIONS: An integrative medicine approach including yoga therapy, holistic nursing, and a healing environment in the inpatient setting can decrease use of medications, resulting in substantial cost savings for hospitals in the care of oncology patients. (+info)
The effects measurement of hand massage by the autonomic activity and psychological indicators.
This study examined the effects of hand massage on autonomic activity, anxiety, relaxation and sense of affinity by performing it to healthy people before applying the technic in actual clinical practice. Findings were showed below: 1) the significant increase in the pNN50 and the significant decrease in the heart rate meant the intervention of massage increased the autonomic nervous activity, improved the parasympathetic nerve activity and reduced the sympathetic nerve activity. This means the subjects were considered to be in a state of relaxation. 2) Salivary alpha amylase has been reported as a possible indicator for sympathetic nerve activity. In this study, there was no significant difference in the salivary alpha amylase despite a decrease after massage. 3) State anxiety score is temporal situational reactions while being in the state of anxiety and this score decreased significantly after massage. 4) The level of willingness to communicate with other person and the sense of affinity toward the massage-performer had a positive change of 70 percent. From this, it can be considered that a comfortable physical contact between a patient and a nursing profession, who are in a supported-supportive relationship, leads to an effect of shortening the gap in their psychological distance. (+info)