Struggling for dignity: the meaning of women’s experiences of living with fibromyalgia (FM)

Fibromyalgia (FM) is a common chronic pain syndrome with an obscure
etiology, which mostly afflicts middle-aged women. In this
study, 14 women with FM were interviewed about the meaning of
living with the illness. A phenomenological-hermeneutic method
was used to analyze and interpret the interview texts. The
findings show that being a woman with FM means living a life
greatly influenced by the illness in various ways. The women's
experiences of living with FM were presented in three major
interlaced themes: loss of freedom, threat to integrity, and a
struggle to achieve relief and understanding. This study
highlights the importance of meeting people suffering in
illness with respect for their human dignity. The care of
women with FM must empower the women to bring to bear their
own resources so that they can manage to live with the

Soderberg S, Lundman B, Norberg A

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