A phenomenological look at giving an injection


  • Peggy-Anne Field PhD

    1. Associate Professor and Acting Dean, Faculty of Nursing, University of Alberta, Clinical Sciences Building, Edmonton, Canada T6G 2G3
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Phenomenology attempts to get beyond the surface structure of experience to examine the underlying meaning of the realities of everyday life. In this paper, the writer attempts to answer the question, what is it like to give an injection? The paper is based on essays and interviews with ten experienced nurses, ten undergraduate nursing students and four diabetic patients who administered their own insulin. The author explores the meaning of the language used relating to an injection, the meaning that giving an injection has for the nurse, the feelings involved in preparing and giving the injection, and the meaning of the patient's response to the nurse. Two particular client groups create additional feelings for the nurse; the child and the unconscious patient. The phenomenologist never reaches a conclusion. The essay should challenge the reader to respond by saying,‘Yes, it is like this,’ or ‘No, I don't believe it is like that.’ In responding, further understanding is developed. The aim of the author is to stimulate readers so they better understand the anxiety nursing students feel about giving an injection.