Look - Phase 1 of a Participatory Action Research cycle: To exploresocial support in patients with venous leg ulcers post healing.
(2014) Look - Phase 1 of a Participatory Action Research cycle: To exploresocial support in patients with venous leg ulcers post healing., no. 129.
Venous leg ulcers are a chronic condition affecting approximately 1 person in every 2,500 people in the United Kingdom. Venous leg ulcers are active for on average 6-9 months and rates of recurrence are high, with between 26%-69% recurring within one year. There is a plethora of literature focusing on the physical aspect of the condition, such as comparing different types of compression therapy on rates of recurrence. However, there are apparent psychological effects of the condition, including anxiety and depression; and social effects such as symptoms reducing social contact and function, leading to social isolation. There is limited literature assessing patients post healing for psychological and social factors to identify to what extent healing improves these elements of quality of life for the patient. Of the literature which does, it is suggested that there are patients with varying levels of depression post healing; higher levels of depression are associated with lower levels of social support; and there is an association between lower levels of social support, reduced time to recurrence and a higher risk of recurrence. The purpose of this research proposal therefore is to explore social support in patients with venous leg ulcers post healing. It is the first phase of a Participatory Action Research cycle to explore what issues exist in relation to social support, and the extent of these issues. This approach has been adopted acknowledging the concept that to make improvements on a situation, or change it, requires initially identifying the extent of the problem.