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Lived experiences of Iranian parents of beta-thalassemia children

Authors Shahraki-vahed A, Firouzkouhi M, Abdollahimohammad A, Ghalgaie J

Received 20 January 2017

Accepted for publication 4 May 2017

Published 29 June 2017 Volume 2017:10 Pages 243—251

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/JMDH.S132848

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Lucy Goodman

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Scott Fraser

Aziz Shahraki-vahed,1 Mohammadreza Firouzkouhi,1 Abdolghani Abdollahimohammad,1 Jamile Ghalgaie2

1Department of Medical Surgical, Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery, Zabol University of Medical Science, Zabol, Iran; 2Emam Khomeni Hospital, Zabol University of Medical Science, Zabol, Iran

Introduction: Thalassemia is a chronic blood disease, which imposes adverse effects on patients and their families. Parents of such patients, given that they had the thalassemia trait, hold themselves responsible for their children’s disease in addition to other difficulties, bear the burden of guilt and hopelessness and worry about the health and future of their children. This study aimed to explore the lived experiences of parents of children with thalassemia.
Methods: The present research was conducted using a descriptive phenomenological approach. A purposive sampling was carried out until data saturation. Participants included 15 parents of children with thalassemia who were referred to the Thalassemia Center of Zabol to perform therapeutic procedures for their child in 2016.
Results: Extracted interviews were analyzed employing Colaizzi’s method, and four main themes were obtained, including “Gray marriage consanguinity”, “Burdened with increased number of thalassemia children”, “Socio-familial worries” and “Inexpressible wishes for having an ideal society”.
Conclusion: The results revealed that parents of children with thalassemia experience a wide range of problems in different aspects, such as physical, emotional, mental, social, economic and familial dimensions. Their experiences are valuable and can help in achieving a better understanding of their problems, which in turn can enable the members of the treatment team to play a more active role and the society to have a better understanding of this disease.

Keywords: descriptive phenomenology, lived experiences, thalassemia major, Colaizzi’s analysis approach

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