Muriel Shaul is an assistant professor at the University of Utah College of Nursing in Salt Lake City. UT.
Transitions in Chronic Illness: Rheumatoid Arthritis in Women
Version of Record online: 10 JUL 2012
1997 Association of Rehabilitation Nurses
Volume 22, Issue 4, pages 199–205, July-August 1997
How to Cite
Shaul, M. P. (1997), Transitions in Chronic Illness: Rheumatoid Arthritis in Women. Rehabilitation Nursing, 22: 199–205. doi: 10.1002/j.2048-7940.1997.tb02099.x
- Issue online: 10 JUL 2012
- Version of Record online: 10 JUL 2012
This article describes transition theory as it relates to a qualitative study of women with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and the importance of this theory in nursing practice. Rheumatoid arthritis is prototypical of many chronic illnesses because it has a profound impact on activities of daily living. It frequently occurs during a person's most productive years and continues throughout life. Because a person with RA typically experiences a number of exacerbations and remissions over the course of many years, transition theory was chosen as a framework for this study. The study sample consisted of 30 women with RA, who were interviewed about their experiences of living with this chronic illness. The women described four distinct phases in learning to live with RA, which began with awareness and proceeded to mastery. These findings are consistent with the stages of transition described by other investigators.