Adolescents' lived experience of epilepsy

Pernilla Garmy, Bengt Sivberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Citations (Scopus)


To improve the well-being of adolescents with epilepsy, research is needed on how adolescents cope. In this study, Lazarus' model of stress and coping and Antonovsky's Theory of Sense of Coherence were used as the theoretical framework. The aim was to describe the lived experience of adolescents with epilepsy and their coping skills. The participants were 13-19 years old with an epilepsy diagnosis but without mental retardation or cerebral palsy. The study was performed in southern Sweden at the pediatric department of a university hospital. Semistructured and open-ended interviews were conducted with 13 adolescents. The transcripts were analyzed with manifest and latent content analysis. All the adolescents had developed strategies to cope with the emotional strains caused by epilepsy. They experienced strains from the seizures, limitation of leisure activities, side effects of medication, and feelings of being different. The coping strategies described were finding support, being in control, and experimenting.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)40-49
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Neuroscience Nursing
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2003
Externally publishedYes

Swedish Standard Keywords

  • Health Sciences (303)


  • Epilepsy
  • adolescents
  • lived experience


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