Using Social Support Theory to Care for CVA Patients


College of Nursing, Texas Woman's University, 1130 M.D. Anderson Boulevard, Houston, TX 77030-2897


The purpose of this article is to describe how social support theory was used to guide the nursing care of patients admitted to a rehabilitation unit in a large teaching hospital in a metropolitan medical center. Criteria from Caplan's Social Support Theory (Caplan & Killilea, 1976) were used to outline a plan that included input from significant others to create a plan for their loved ones who were recovering from left-side CVAs. All nursing care was based on the cognitive and intellectual abilities of the patients. Two case studies are presented to illustrate the use of these nursing protocols.