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Young and Midlife Stroke SurvivorsExperiences With the Health Services and Long-Term Follow-Up Needs

Martinsen, Randi; Kirkevold, Marit; Sveen, Unni

Journal of Neuroscience Nursing: February 2015 - Volume 47 - Issue 1 - p 27–35
doi: 10.1097/JNN.0000000000000107

ABSTRACT The aim of this qualitative study was to explore young and midlife stroke survivorsexperiences with the health services and to identify long-term follow-up needs. Sixteen participants from two cohorts were interviewed in-depth. The interviews were analyzed applying a hermeneutic–phenomenological analysis. The participants struggled to gain access to follow-up health services. They felt that whether they were systematically followed up was more coincidental than planned. Young and midlife stroke survivors thus appear vulnerable to falling outside the follow-up system. Those participants who received some follow-up care perceived it as untailored to their specific needs. To be considered supportive, the follow-up programs must be in line with their long-term needs, take into account their particular challenges as young and midlife stroke survivors, and be planned in close collaboration with the individual patient. To secure systematic and follow-up health services tailored to the individual, knowledgeable and committed healthcare professionals should play a prominent role within the community health services.

Marit Kirkevold, EdD, is a Professor at Institute of Health and Society, Oslo, Norway.

Unni Sveen, PhD, is a Professor at Faculty of Health Science, Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences, Oslo, Norway.

Questions or comments about this article may be directed to Randi Martinsen, PhD, at She is an Associate Professor at Hedmark University College, Elverum, Hedmark, Norway.

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

© 2015 American Association of Neuroscience Nurses