This study examined the role of spirituality in defining and managing Parkinson's disease (PD) for people with PD and their families. A content-analysis approach was used to interpret and analyze individual and family interviews from 27 families. Participants primarily were Caucasian dyads representing different geographic areas and socioeconomic statuses. Findings revealed that the ways persons with PD and their families managed the chronic illness were influenced by belief and faith, purpose and meaning, prayer, the support of family and friends, and hope. Healthcare providers need to understand the role of spirituality in influencing ways that persons with PD and their families define and manage the disease and to support people in their efforts.
Questions or comments about this article may be directed to Vicki Bingham at email@example.com. She is a doctoral student in nursing at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, AL.
Barbara Habermann, PhD RN, is an associate professor in the School of Nursing, University of Alabama at Birmingham and a scientist at the Center for Aging.
© 2006 American Association of Neuroscience Nurses