Exploring experiences of people with stroke and health professionals on post-stroke fatigue guidance: Getting the right people to the right care at the right time.

M Jacobi, L van der Schuur, B L Seves*, P Brandenbarg, R Dekker, F J Hettinga, F Hoekstra, L A Krops, L H V van der Woude, T Hoekstra

*Corresponding author for this work

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PURPOSE: This focus group study aimed to explore experiences and perceptions on post-stroke fatigue guidance in Dutch rehabilitation and follow-up care among people/patients with stroke and health professionals.

METHODS: Ten persons with stroke and twelve health professionals with different professions within stroke rehabilitation or follow-up care in the Netherlands were purposively sampled and included. Eight online focus group interviews were conducted. We analysed the data using reflexive thematic analysis.

RESULTS: Three themes were identified. Guidance in fatigue management did not always match the needs of people/patients with stroke. Professionals were positive about the provided fatigue guidance (e.g. advice on activity pacing), but found it could be better tailored to the situation of people/patients with stroke. Professionals believe the right time for post-stroke fatigue guidance is when people/patients with stroke are motivated to change physical activity behaviour to manage fatigue - mostly several months after stroke - while people/patients with stroke preferred information on post-stroke fatigue well before discharge. Follow-up care and suggestions for improvement described that follow-up support after rehabilitation by a stroke coach is not implemented nationwide, while people/patients with stroke and professionals expressed a need for it.

CONCLUSIONS: The study findings will help guide improvement of fatigue guidance in stroke rehabilitation programmes and stroke follow-up care aiming to improve physical activity, functioning, participation, and health.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages9
JournalDisability and Rehabilitation
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 10-Nov-2023

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