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      Interpretive description: a viable methodological approach for nursing research Translated title: Descripción interpretativa: un enfoque metodológico viable para la investigación en enfermedad Translated title: Descrição interpretativa: uma abordagem metodológica viável para a pesquisa em enfermagem


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          Abstract Objective: To present a theoretical reflection about the origin and the assumptions of the "Interpretive Description" method, and to discuss its applicability in Nursing and Health research. Method: Theoretical-reflective study, based on articles and books published by proponent of this approach, as well as scientific articles in which the authors reported having used this method in their studies. Results: It was evidenced that the "Interpretive Description" arose from the need to generate a better understanding of clinical practices in Nursing. This approach has its roots in the methodological traditions of the Social Sciences, although it differs from them in terms of its excessive rigidity and essentially theoretical objectives. The proposed method has been applied in several studies either in Nursing as other areas of Health. Conclusion: The "Interpretive Description" is considered a feasible approach for the production of knowledge in Applied Sciences such as Nursing.

          Translated abstract

          Resumen Objetivo: Presentar una reflexión teórica sobre el origen y los presupuestos del método de "Descripción Interpretativa", y discutir su aplicabilidad en las investigaciones en Enfermería y Salud. Método: Estudio teórico-reflexivo, teniendo como base artículos y libros publicados por la proponente de este enfoque, así como artículos científicos en los que los autores mencionar on haber usado ese método en sus estudios. Resultados: Se evidenció que la "Descripción Interpretativa" surgió de la necesidad de generar un mejor entendimiento de prácticas clínicas en Enfermería. Este enfoque tiene raíces en las tradiciones metodológicas de las Ciencias Sociales, aunque diferenciándose de éstas en lo que concierne a su excesiva rigidez y objetivos de naturaleza esencialmente teórica. El método propuesto ha sido aplicado en varios estudios tanto de Enfermería y de otras áreas de la Salud. Conclusión: Se considera la "Descripción Interpretativa" una borda je viable para la producción de conocimiento en Ciencias Aplicadas como la Enfermería.

          Translated abstract

          Resumo Objetivo: Apresentar reflexão teórica sobre o método de "Descrição Interpretativa", discutindo sua aplicabilidade às pesquisas em Enfermagem e em Saúde. Método: Estudo teórico-reflexivo, com base em artigos e livros publicados pela proponente dessa abordagem, e em artigos nos quais os autores referiram ter usado o método. Resultados: Evidenciou-se que a "Descrição Interpretativa" surgiu da necessidade de uma opção metodológica mais direcionada às Ciências Aplicadas como a Enfermagem. Essa abordagem tem raízes em tradições metodológicas das Ciências Sociais, mas diferencia-se destas por sua natureza mais prática e pela maior flexibilidade na aplicação das etapas do método. Esse referencial metodológico vem sendo aplicado em estudos tanto de Enfermagem como de outras áreas da Saúde. Conclusão: Considera-se a "Descrição Interpretativa" uma abordagem metodológica viável e exequível para a produção de conhecimento em Enfermagem.

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          Interpretive description: a noncategorical qualitative alternative for developing nursing knowledge.

          Despite nursing's enthusiastic endorsement of the applicability of qualitative research approaches to answering relevant clinical questions, many nurse researchers have been hesitant to depart from traditional qualitative research methods. While various derivations of phenomenology, grounded theory, and ethnography have been popularized within qualitative nursing research, the methodological principles upon which these approaches are based reflect the foundations and objectives of disciplines whose aims are sometimes quite distinct from nursing's domain of inquiry. Thus, as many nurse researchers have discovered, nursing's unique knowledge mandate may not always be well served by strict adherence to traditional methods as the "gold standard" for qualitative nursing research. The authors present the point of view that a non-categorical description, drawing on principles grounded in nursing's epistemological mandate, may be an appropriate methodological alternative for credible research toward the development of nursing science. They propose a coherent set of strategies for conceptual orientation, sampling, data construction, analysis, and reporting by which nurses can use an interpretive descriptive approach to develop knowledge about human health and illness experience phenomena without sacrificing the theoretical or methodological integrity that the traditional qualitative approaches provide.
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            Unexpected: an interpretive description of parental traumas’ associated with preterm birth

            Background Preterm birth (PTB) places a considerable emotional, psychological, and financial burden on parents, families, health care resources, and society as a whole. Efforts to estimate these costs have typically considered the direct medical costs of the initial hospital and outpatient follow-up care but have not considered non-financial costs associated with PTB such as adverse psychosocial and emotional effects, family disruption, strain on relationships, alterations in self-esteem, and deterioration in physical and mental health. The aim of this inquiry is to understand parents’ experience of PTB to inform the design of subsequent studies of the direct and indirect cost of PTB. The study highlights the traumatic nature of having a child born preterm and discusses implications for clinical care and further research. Method Through interviews and focus groups, this interpretive descriptive study explored parents’ experiences of PTB. The interviews were audiotaped, transcribed, and analyzed for themes. Analysis was ongoing throughout the study and in subsequent interviews, parents were asked to reflect and elaborate on the emerging themes as they were identified. Results PTB is a traumatic event that shattered parents’ taken-for-granted expectations of parenthood. For parents in our study, the trauma they experienced was not related to infant characteristics (e.g., gestational age, birth weight, Apgar scores, or length of stay in the NICU), but rather to prolonged uncertainty, lack of agency, disruptions in meaning systems, and alterations in parental role expectations. Our findings help to explain why things like breast feeding, kangaroo care, and family centered practices are so meaningful to parents in the NICU. As well as helping to (re)construct their role as parents, these activities afford parents a sense of agency, thereby moderating their own helplessness. Conclusion These findings underscore the traumatic nature and resultant psychological distress related to PTB. Obstetrical and neonatal healthcare providers need to be educated about the symptoms of Acute Stress Disorder (ASD) and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) to better understand and support parents’ efforts to adapt and to make appropriate referrals if problems develop. Longitudinal economic studies must consider the psychosocial implications of PTB to in order to determine the total related costs.
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              Communicating shared decision-making: cancer patient perspectives.

              To contribute to the evolving dialogue on optimizing cancer care communication through systematic analyzes of patients' perspectives. Using constant comparative analysis, inductively derived thematic patterns of communication preferences for shared decision-making were drawn from individual interviews with 60 cancer patients. Thematic patterns in how patients understand barriers and facilitators to communication within shared decision-making illuminate the basis for distinctive patient preferences and needs. Prevailing cancer communication considerations included focusing attention on the tone and setting of the consultation environment, the attitudinal climate within the consult, the specific approach to handling numerical/statistical information, and the critical messaging around hope. The patient accounts surfaced complex dynamics whereby the experiences of living with cancer permeated interpretations and enactment of the shared decision-making that is emerging as a dominant ideal of cancer care. In our efforts to move beyond traditional paternalism, shared decision-making has been widely advocated as best practice in cancer communication. However, patient experiential evidence suggests the necessity of a careful balance between standardized approaches and respect for diversities. Shared decision-making as a practice standard must be balanced against individual patient preferences. Crown Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

                Author and article information

                Escola Anna Nery
                Esc. Anna Nery
                Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (, RJ, Brazil )
                : 22
                : 3
                : e20170287
                [2] Vancouver British Columbia orgnameThe University of British Columbia Canada
                [1] Crato Ceará orgnameUniversidade Regional do Cariri Brazil
                S1414-81452018000300601 S1414-8145(18)02200300601

                This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

                : 22 September 2017
                : 17 January 2018
                Page count
                Figures: 0, Tables: 0, Equations: 0, References: 19, Pages: 0

                SciELO Brazil

                Nursing,Methods,Enfermagem,Research projects,Projetos de pesquisa,Pesquisa em enfermagem,Pesquisa qualitativa,Métodos,Investigación en enfermería,Investigación cualitativa,Qualitative research,Proyectos de investigación,Enfermería,Nursing research


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