Reframing everydayness: a grounded theory study of women's perceptions of the contribution of cardiac rehabilitation to their recovery from a heart attack : a thesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in Nursing at Massey University
Coronary heart disease (CHD) is a serious health issue for women but, in the past, women have been under-represented in research related to this condition. Instead, research using male populations has been used as a basis for the diagnosis and treatment of CHD in women. This has resulted in men and women being treated the same despite the presence of physiological and social differences. To ensure future diagnosis and treatment is based on appropriate research related to women and CHD. Grounded theory was used to explore women's perceptions of the contribution of cardiac rehabilitation to their recovery from a heart attack. The constant comparative method of data analysis was used to develop categories from the data. Overall the experience of suffering a heart attack caused disruption to everyday life and functioning. This included interruption to activities and social roles and shock at having suffered a heart attack. Recovery was characterised by 'reframing' their lives based on the alterations caused by their heart attack experience. The women in this study attempted to return to their everyday roles and responsibilities through the basic social process of "regaining everydayness". Most women did not recognise that they had received phase one cardiac rehabilitation, and although phase two cardiac rehabilitation met some of the education needs of the women in this study, it did not provide the support that all participants required. For some participants social needs were met by attending cardiac rehabilitation sessions. Phase two cardiac rehabilitation attendance was affected by transport, time, family and social issues, such as work commitments. Although some aspects of cardiac rehabilitation were beneficial for most participants, it did not appear to aid recovery for all of them.