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Authors

  1. Liedstrom, Elisabeth
  2. Isaksson, Ann-Kristin
  3. Ahlstrom, Gerd

The well-being of patients' next of kin can be an important factor with regard to the care and rehabilitation of patients with multiple sclerosis (MS). The aim of this qualitative study was to explore the presence and meaning of chronic sorrow in a group of next of kin of patients with MS. Using a semistructured interview guide as a basis, 44 next of kin were interviewed. The results showed that 35 (80%) of the participants were considered to have chronic sorrow based on predetermined criteria. Three main themes characterized the meaning of chronic sorrow: loss of security, loss of sense of community in family life, and loss of joy and recreation. This study indicates that nurses need to devote greater attention to the well-being of next of kin, offering support programs to help them cope with chronic sorrow.