Patients’ experiences of surgical site infection
The qualitative experience of having a surgical site infection (SSI) is often overlooked. The aim of this study was to present a description of how SSIs affect the lives of patients and their families. Seventeen former patients from three hospitals in England were interviewed to explore their experience of having an SSI. The interview data was transcribed and analysed into the following themes – horror stories, physical effects, psychological effects, effect on families, feelings of relief, not blaming the hospital, and lack of support after discharge. Numerous articles describe SSIs as being ‘distressing’ for patients. This study reveals the extent of the distress, with patients describing feeling ‘utter despair’ and ‘wanting to die’. These symptoms continued for months after patients had been discharged from hospital.
Citation:Tanner, J. et al. (2012) Patients’ experiences of surgical site infection. Journal of Infection Prevention, 13 (5), pp164-168
Research Group:Nursing and Midwifery Research Centre