Separation of conjoined twins: experiences of perioperative nurses and their recommendations

Martin-McDonald, Kristine, McIntyre, P. and Hegney, Desley 2005, Separation of conjoined twins: experiences of perioperative nurses and their recommendations, International nursing review, vol. 52, no. 1, pp. 52-59, doi: 10.1111/j.1466-7657.2004.00239.x.

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Title Separation of conjoined twins: experiences of perioperative nurses and their recommendations
Author(s) Martin-McDonald, Kristine
McIntyre, P.
Hegney, Desley
Journal name International nursing review
Volume number 52
Issue number 1
Start page 52
End page 59
Publisher Wiley Interscience
Place of publication New York, N.Y.
Publication date 2005
ISSN 0020-8132
Keyword(s) conjoined twins
perioperative nurses
workplace stress
Summary Background: Within an 8-month period, an unprecedented and historical first in Queensland, Australia, the perioperative nurses were members of teams involved in the surgical separation of two sets of conjoined twins. Little is known about the (dis)stress that some of these perioperative nurses experienced nor how best to support them during such experiences.

Aim: The aim of this paper is to report on the qualitiative study that explored the experiences of those perioperative nurses involved in the surgical separation of cojoined twins and from their stories propose recommendations to support perioperative nurses who are confronted with such workplace experiences.

Methods: Using a narrative methodology, nine perioperative nurses shared their stories of being involved in the surgical separation of conjoined twins in Australia. Narrative and thematic analyses were conducted and recommendations to support perioperative nurses through workplace (dis)stress were identified. Participants validated the findings and recommendations.

Findings: The analyses revealed the themes of professionalism, teamwork, 'them vs. us' and emotional loads.

Discussion: The sensationalism around the rarity of conjoined twins brought an intensive intrusiveness from the world media. As a result, secrecy within the hospital about the conjoined twin cases created divisions between those perioperative nurses on the teams and those not. The processes and outcomes of the two surgical cases were in contrast to each other. For some perioperative nurses this caused distress. It is essential that professional support is offered in a way in which the perioperative nurse can take it up without fear of negative judgement.

Language eng
DOI 10.1111/j.1466-7657.2004.00239.x
Field of Research 111003 Clinical Nursing: Secondary (Acute Care)
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2005 International Council of Nurses
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Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
School of Nursing and Midwifery
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