Handling knowledge on osteoporosis – a qualitative study


Dorthe Nielsen, Odense University Hospital, University of Southern Denmark, Kloevervaenget 6, 1st floor, Odense 5000, Denmark. E-mail: dnielsen@health.sdu.dk


The aim of this qualitative study was to increase understanding of the importance of osteoporosis information and knowledge for patients’ ways of handling osteoporosis in their everyday lives. Interviews were performed with 14 patients recruited from two English university hospitals and 12 patients from a Danish university hospital. Critical psychology was used as a theoretical framework for the data analysis, which aimed at shedding light on patients’ ways of conducting everyday life with osteoporosis. The themes that emerged from the analysis showed that life conditions influenced the way in which risk, pain and osteoporosis were handled. Everyday life was also influenced by patients’ attitude to treatment. The patients who were experiencing emotional difficulties in handling osteoporosis were not those suffering from severe osteoporosis and fractures. Approaches to living with knowledge of future fracture risk varied according to the individual patient’s resourcefulness and experiences.