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Experience of Identity Change in People Who Reported a Diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis : A Qualitative Inquiry

Barker, Alexander B.; Smale, Kathryn; Hunt, Nigel; Lincoln, Nadina B.; das Nair, Roshan

Authors

Kathryn Smale

Nigel Hunt

Nadina B. Lincoln

Roshan das Nair



Contributors

Kathryn Smale
Researcher

Nigel Hunt
Researcher

Nadina B. Lincoln
Researcher

Roshan das Nair
Researcher

Abstract

Background: A diagnosis of multiple sclerosis (MS) can lead to changes to a person’s sense of self. The aim of this study was to investigate the subjective experience of identity change and subsequent adjustment to MS.
Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 16 people who reported having MS. Interviews were analysed using thematic analysis.
Results: In the early stages of the disease progression, participants wished to compartmentalise the disease. Over time, through reflected self-appraisals, brought about by increasing symptoms and changed relationships with others, the disease became a part of participants’ self-identity.
Conclusions: For people with MS, incorporating and accepting the disease as part of their self-identity can have positive implications for seeking and receiving support.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Sep 1, 2019
Journal 1537-2073
Print ISSN 1537-2073
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 21
Issue 5
Pages 235-242
APA6 Citation Barker, A. B., Smale, K., Hunt, N., Lincoln, N. B., & das Nair, R. (2019). Experience of Identity Change in People Who Reported a Diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis : A Qualitative Inquiry. International Journal of Ms Care, 21(5), 235-242. https://doi.org/10.7224/1537-2073.2018-069
DOI https://doi.org/10.7224/1537-2073.2018-069
Keywords Multiple Sclerosis (MS); Self; Rehabilitation < Adaptation; Coping; Enduring; Psychology; 10
Publisher URL https://ijmsc.org/doi/10.7224/1537-2073.2018-069
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