Northampton Electronic Collection of Theses and Research

'With age comes wisdom almost always too late': Older adults' experiences of T2DM

Hood, G., Huber, J., Gustaffson, U., Scambler, S. and Asimakopoulou, K. (2009) 'With age comes wisdom almost always too late': Older adults' experiences of T2DM. European Diabetes Nursing. 6(1), pp. 23-28. 1551-7861.

Item Type: Article
Abstract: Background: This article describes the results of qualitative work aiming to highlight and understand the experiences of older adults who have lived with type 2 diabetes (T2DM) for approximately 20 years. Methods: Twenty-eight participants (mean age, 70 years) were interviewed using a triangulated research design of in-depth, semi-structured interviews, two quantitative questionnaires and the main findings from theoretical frameworks on chronic illness literature. One of the questions that the study sought to address was the advice that participants would give to a person newly diagnosed with T2DM, thereby determining self-reported priorities in the illness trajectory. The research analysis was grounded within an interpretative paradigm with emphasis on a life course approach. Results: Several themes emerged; denial and acceptance were inherent in these older adults’ experiences of being diagnosed with diabetes, as was the need to fight the illness rather than let it take control of their lives. The need to prepare people for the degenerative nature of diabetes and therefore the need to commence insulin was also apparent within the sample. Conclusion: These findings indicate the diabetes journey that individuals may experience from diagnosis, acceptance and changes to self-identity. Currently, older adults with T2DM and their experiences of the illness trajectory are a little-used resource. Their ‘pearls of wisdom’ – sometimes recognised too late to assist themselves – may inform others with T2DM and perhaps alleviate the psychological disturbance that many feel at diagnosis and later on at the commencement of insulin.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Type 2 diabetes, diabetes biography, older adults, acceptance and denial
Subjects: R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC952 Geriatrics
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC660 Diabetes
Creators: Hood, G, Huber, Jorg, Gustaffson, U, Scambler, S and Asimakopoulou, K
Publisher: John Wiley
Northamptonshire and East Midlands: Health
Faculties, Divisions and Institutes: University Faculties, Divisions and Research Centres - OLD > Faculty of Health & Society
Date: 18 March 2009
Date Type: Publication
Page Range: pp. 23-28
Journal or Publication Title: European Diabetes Nursing
Volume: 6
Number: 1
Language: English
ISSN: 1551-7861
Status: Published / Disseminated
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