A significant proportion of those infected with the hepatitis C virus experience fatigue. Currently, little is known about what this means to the affected individuals on a daily basis. This information is necessary so that those caring for this population may elicit the critical junctures in this process as perceived by the sufferer and plan how they may assist them manage their fatigue. The aim of the study was therefore to gain an appreciation of what it is like to live with hepatitis C associated fatigue. A qualitative research approach utilising a grounded theory design was employed. Theoretical sampling generated a sample of 28 participants far in-depth interview. Data analysis consisted of three coding processes; each type of coding having its own purpose and methodology. The study found that hepatitis C associated fatigue had the capacity to strip individuals of their ability to control their lives. The management strategies employed by the participants to regain control post-diagnosis were varied in type and effectiveness. Some of the participants had successfully regained control over their lives through the instigation of various strategies and were living fulfilled lives as fatigued persons. This study provides a valuable insight into what living with this symptom is like far those affected. It should afford nurses with the opportunity to deliver care that is focused and impacts in a positive manner in the lives of the fatigued hepatitis C community.
- Hepatitis C
- Grounded theory