University of Twente Student Theses

Login

A matter of the heart : do cardiac patients experience existential anxiety perioperatively? : An investigative study of patients’ and professionals’ perspective

Hartmann, L. (2020) A matter of the heart : do cardiac patients experience existential anxiety perioperatively? : An investigative study of patients’ and professionals’ perspective.

[img] PDF
1MB
Abstract:Despite excellent survival rates, open-heart surgeries are life-threatening events for many patients, accompanied by anxiety and depression. Although cardiac rehabilitation now integrates psychological approaches to improve patients' quality of life and to prevent the recurrence of cardiac events, even psychological rehabilitation programs based on cognitive-behavioural therapy primarily aim to optimise the patient and devote no attention to presumable confrontations with existential concerns. This study attempted to gain a comprehensive understanding of cardiac patients’ perioperative experiences regarding confrontations with existential anxieties based on the tenets of existential psychotherapy according to Irvin D. Yalom. Therefore, both the perspectives were examined deductively and inductively. For the analysis, the four existential givens (1) death, (2) freedom, (3) meaninglessness, and (4) isolation served as overarching themes, whereby this sequence also reflects their coinciding occurrence in descending order. Additionally, it should be identified which ultimate concern occupied them predominantly and whether the professionals’ perceptions coincide with the patients’ experiences. In two-thirds of the patients, open-heart surgeries evoked existential anxiety, which manifested itself in pathological symptoms of depression. Attending professionals perceive patients anxieties, yet their focus tends to be rather biomedical. Thereby, the integration of an existential approach into existing cardiac rehabilitation programs could be beneficial.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology MSc (66604)
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/essays/82893
Export this item as:BibTeX
EndNote
HTML Citation
Reference Manager

 

Repository Staff Only: item control page