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A biographical study of men with chronic low back pain

A biographical study of men with chronic low back pain
A biographical study of men with chronic low back pain
Low back pain is a common condition that will affect 80% of the population at some point in their lives. For the majority of people the pain and associated disability will be resolved and they will resume normal activities. For a small proportion of this group however, the condition will remain unresolved with associated long-term pain and disability; this is termed chronic low back pain (CLBP). The costs associated with CLBP are high both physically and emotionally for the individual, and in terms of the economic burden placed on society pertaining to healthcare costs and lost productivity.

CLBP is a multifaceted condition. Whilst a biopsychosocial model of care, as opposed to the traditional biomedical model, is advocated as the best approach for its management it has been suggested that the impact on the self-concept and identity of individuals with this condition has not been fully explored or addressed.

This study employed a biographical approach with the aim of understanding the impact on the lives and identities of men living with CLBP. Five men were recruited and in-depth interviews were undertaken which were audio-recorded, transcribed verbatim and analysed thematically.

The identity of all the participants in the study had been affected by CLBP. Clear themes emerged that included feeling defined by their CLBP, experiencing feelings of frustration and anger, the inability to retain their masculine role, the impact on fatherhood, public and private identities, physicality and feeling a liability or burden to others. The support received from significant others was also highlighted. The participants detailed how exercise and education were major aspects in the management of their condition whilst resilience and the use of humour were also very apparent in their narratives as mechanisms to enable them to cope with CLBP.
Pearce, Julian Mark
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Pearce, Julian Mark
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Byrne, Jennifer
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(2012) A biographical study of men with chronic low back pain. University of Southampton, Southampton Education School, Doctoral Thesis, 182pp.

Record type: Thesis (Doctoral)

Abstract

Low back pain is a common condition that will affect 80% of the population at some point in their lives. For the majority of people the pain and associated disability will be resolved and they will resume normal activities. For a small proportion of this group however, the condition will remain unresolved with associated long-term pain and disability; this is termed chronic low back pain (CLBP). The costs associated with CLBP are high both physically and emotionally for the individual, and in terms of the economic burden placed on society pertaining to healthcare costs and lost productivity.

CLBP is a multifaceted condition. Whilst a biopsychosocial model of care, as opposed to the traditional biomedical model, is advocated as the best approach for its management it has been suggested that the impact on the self-concept and identity of individuals with this condition has not been fully explored or addressed.

This study employed a biographical approach with the aim of understanding the impact on the lives and identities of men living with CLBP. Five men were recruited and in-depth interviews were undertaken which were audio-recorded, transcribed verbatim and analysed thematically.

The identity of all the participants in the study had been affected by CLBP. Clear themes emerged that included feeling defined by their CLBP, experiencing feelings of frustration and anger, the inability to retain their masculine role, the impact on fatherhood, public and private identities, physicality and feeling a liability or burden to others. The support received from significant others was also highlighted. The participants detailed how exercise and education were major aspects in the management of their condition whilst resilience and the use of humour were also very apparent in their narratives as mechanisms to enable them to cope with CLBP.

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More information

Published date: September 2012
Organisations: University of Southampton, Southampton Education School

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 348803
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/348803
PURE UUID: 2f31a6af-1c16-42fc-bba5-4e9828f8ba5f
ORCID for Jennifer Byrne: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-6969-5539

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 21 Feb 2013 16:38
Last modified: 25 Jul 2019 00:36

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Contributors

Author: Julian Mark Pearce
Thesis advisor: Jennifer Byrne ORCID iD

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