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Challenges in Conducting Research After Family Presence During Resuscitation

Leske, Jane S. PhD, RN, ACNS-BC; McAndrew, Natalie S. MSN, RN, ACNS-BC, CCRN; Evans, Crystal-Rae Dawn RN, BSN; Garcia, Annette E. MSN, RN, ACNS-BC; Brasel, Karen J. MD, MPH

doi: 10.1097/JTN.0b013e318261d041

Family presence during resuscitation (FPDR) is an option occurring in clinical practice. National clinical guidelines on providing the option of FPDR are available from the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses, American Heart Association, Emergency Nurses Association, and Society of Critical Care Medicine. The FPDR option currently remains controversial, underutilized, and not the usual practice with trauma patients. This article is based on the methodological and practical research challenges associated with an ongoing study to examine the effects of the FPDR option on family outcomes in patients experiencing critical injury after motor vehicle crashes and gunshot wounds. The primary aim of this study was to examine the effects of the FPDR option on family outcomes of anxiety, stress, well-being, and satisfaction and compare those outcomes in families who participate in FPDR to those families who do not participate in FPDR. Examples of real clinical challenges faced by the researchers are described throughout this article. Research challenges include design, sampling, inclusion/exclusion criteria, human subjects, and procedures. Recruitment of family members who participated in the FPDR option is a complex process, especially after admission to the critical care unit.

College of Nursing, University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee (Dr Leske); Froedtert Hospital (Dr Leske and Mss McAndrew, Evans, and Garcia), Milwaukee, Wisconsin; and Medical Intensive Care Unit (Mss McAndrew and Evans), Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit (Ms Gracia), Surgery and Health Policy, Medical College of Wisconsin (Dr Brasel), Milwaukee.

Correspondence: Jane S. Leske, PhD, RN, ACNS-BC, 5290 Boettcher Dr, West Bend, WI 53095 (

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

© 2012 Society of Trauma Nurses