Abstract

This study identifies the meaning of context in recapturing self-care after a stroke or spinal cord injury (SCI). Recapturing denotes the process of engaging in self-care to regain the ability to participate in self-care activities. Five people who had had a stroke and 6 people with SCI were interviewed 1–3 months after onset. The interviews were open ended and transcribed verbatim. They were analyzed by using the empirical, phenomenological, psychological method, which identified 6 main characteristics describing the role of context in recapturing self-care: (1) support from others, (2) an air of expectation, (3) extended time, (4) new daily structure, (5) therapeutic relationship as enabling possibility, and (6) gradual change in challenge. These findings showed that rehabilitation professionals play an important role in creating a context that contributes to recapturing self-care by allowing extended time, enabling patients to see possibilities, and creating expectations for them to do things on their own.

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