Evid Based Nurs 3:94 doi:10.1136/ebn.3.3.94
  • Qualitative

Adults with chronic lung disease had fatigue with laboured breathing that interfered with daily living, but coped well

 QUESTION: What are the experiences of fatigue in adults with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and asthma?


Qualitative description using content analysis of semistructured interview data.


Specialist clinic and not for profit association in St John's, Newfoundland, Canada.


36 participants between 28 and 81 years of age (mean age 58 y, 69% women), 17 with COPD (chronic bronchitis, emphysema, or both) and 19 with asthma, were recruited through a respiratory specialist clinic and a local lung association using purposive sampling.


Data were gathered from face to face interviews that lasted about 1 hour each. Interviews were guided by the “fatigue schedule”, a semistructured questionnaire to prompt discussion on characteristics of fatigue, causative and precipitating factors, associated physical and emotional feelings, the effect on relationships and everyday activities, and coping strategies and resources; however, participants were encouraged to speak freely about their experience of fatigue. Interviews were audiotaped, …

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