Psychology and Psychotherapy: Theory, Research and Practice

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Volume 73 Issue 2 (June 2000), Pages 145-288

Rescuer and rescued: Applying a cognitive analytic perspective to explore the ‘mis‐management’ of asthma (pages 151-168)

Asthma is a life‐threatening and disabling condition in which medication is the major form of management. However, there is widespread evidence that asthmatic patients do not comply with their medical regimens which increases the likelihood of relapse, crisis, hospital admission and can represent a threat to the patient's life. A phenomenological qualitative study was designed which integrated the framework of cognitive analytic therapy. The aim was to explore those factors that influenced the self‐care regimens of asthma sufferers. Thirty‐five patients were interviewed and three patterns of ‘non‐compliance’ were identified. The clinical implications are discussed. The paper concludes with comments on the contribution of psychotherapeutic tools as a means of understanding ‘risky’ patient behaviours.

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