‘Fishing with the dead’—Recall of memories from the ICU

Magarey, Judith M. and McCutcheon, Helen H. (2005) ‘Fishing with the dead’—Recall of memories from the ICU. Intensive and Critical Care Nursing, 21 6: 344-354. doi:10.1016/j.iccn.2005.02.004

Author Magarey, Judith M.
McCutcheon, Helen H.
Title ‘Fishing with the dead’—Recall of memories from the ICU
Journal name Intensive and Critical Care Nursing   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0964-3397
Publication date 2005-12-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.iccn.2005.02.004
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 21
Issue 6
Start page 344
End page 354
Total pages 11
Place of publication London, United Kingdom
Publisher Churchill Livingstone
Language eng
Abstract The purpose of this study was to explore the memories of patients who had a short-term admission to the ICU, with a particular focus on dreams, nightmares and confusion. Descriptive data were collected from a target sample of 50 participants, by means of a questionnaire. Following this, eight patients who had completed and returned the questionnaire and had reported hallucinations, dreams or confusion participated in open-ended, semi-structured interviews. Analysis of the data generated by the questionnaire revealed that the most common memories of ICU were anxiety, pain, thirst and nausea. Nightmares, hallucinations and confusion were also common and were reported to be highly distressing. The transcribed interviews were subjected to a thematic analysis. The themes that emerged were, reality and unreality, blackness and colour, powerlessness and purpose, and death. Participants described horrifying paranoid delusions. It is proposed that constant reassurance and explaining every day ICU happenings may assist patients to understand what they are experiencing and loved ones may provide an important link with reality.
Keyword Dreams
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work Publications
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Created: Wed, 18 Nov 2015, 19:30:22 EST by Vicki Percival on behalf of School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work