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    ‘I’m worried about getting water in the holes in my head’: a phenomenological psychology case study of the experience of undergoing deep brain stimulation surgery for Parkinson’s disease

    Eatough, Virginia and Shaw, K. (2017) ‘I’m worried about getting water in the holes in my head’: a phenomenological psychology case study of the experience of undergoing deep brain stimulation surgery for Parkinson’s disease. British Journal of Health Psychology 22 (1), pp. 94-109. ISSN 1359-107X.

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    Abstract

    Objectives: Deep brain stimulation (DBS) is a form of biotechnological surgery which has had considerable success for the motor improvement of Parkinson’s disease and related disorders. Paradoxically, this observed motor improvement is not matched with improved psychosocial adjustment. This study contributes to a small but growing body of research aiming to understand this paradox. We conclude by discussing these aspects from a phenomenological and health psychology understanding of decision-making, human affectivity and embodiment. Design: A hermeneutic phenomenological case study. Methods: Semi-structured interviews with one woman with Parkinson’s disease were carried out paying particular attention to (a) how the decision to have the procedure was made and (b) the affective experience in the time periods immediately prior to the procedure, shortly after and one month later. Results: The thematic structure derived from the hermeneutic phenomenological analysis comprises the following experiential aspects: Making the decision: ‘I was feeling rather at a dead end with my Parkinson’s’; Shifting emotions and feelings: ‘Terrified, excited, disappointed, overjoyed’; Embodied meaning: ‘This extraordinary procedure where they were going to drill holes in my head’. Conclusions: This research has elucidated the complexity of decision–making, the emotional landscape and specific bodily nature of the experience of DBS. It has suggested implications for practice informed by both existential-phenomenological theory and health psychology.

    Metadata

    Item Type: Article
    Additional Information: This is the peer reviewed version of the article, which has been published in final form at the link above. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.
    School: Birkbeck Schools and Departments > School of Science > Psychological Sciences
    Depositing User: Virginia Eatough
    Date Deposited: 29 Nov 2016 13:15
    Last Modified: 17 Nov 2017 01:10
    URI: http://eprints.bbk.ac.uk/id/eprint/16384

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