Social participation of people with chronic wounds: A systematic review

  • Living with chronic ulcers can be burdensome and restrictive, with regard to not only physical and psychological but also social well-being. This review aims to analyse social participation in patients with chronic wounds and to compare results across different wound types. A search string was applied in several electronic databases. Results were screened according to predefined inclusion and exclusion criteria. Data of eligible articles were extracted and synthesised narratively. The search revealed 42 eligible publications. Only minor differences across different ulcer types could be detected. Overall, family members were the main social contacts for patients; they often provided wound care and emotional support. Patients had few non-family relations, but those existing were often very close. Patients felt guilty as their condition imposed burden on family and friends, as well. A close relationship with nurses was described. Restrictions were caused by direct and indirect consequences of the wound. Overall, social support and social connections were reduced in wound patients. Inconsistent results were found regarding social isolation. In summary, people with chronic wounds experience impairments in all aspects of social participation. Therefore, social participation deserves increased attention in routine care both as a trigger of burden and as an outcome of therapy.

  • info:eu-repo/semantics/openAccess
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