New thesis on patients with abdominal aortic aneurysm and the potential of learning and support via eHealth
Olga Nilsson from the research group Vascular Surgery, Department of Molecular Medicine and Surgery, will defend her thesis "Development, evaluation and patient experiences of eHealth in the care of abdominal aortic aneurysm" on September 4, 2020. Main Supervisor is Rebecka Hultgren.
What's the main focus of your thesis?
My thesis focuses on patients with abdominal aortic aneurysm, and different aspects of learning and support during the care trajectory of surgical treatment. Specifically, it investigates the potential of eHealth to accommodate patients’ needs.
Which are the most important results?
The different papers add to the understanding of patients’ need of structured, individualized information and psychosocial support throughout the care trajectory, from initial diagnosis throughout surgical treatment. By an eHealth intervention, comprising an educational mobile app and psychosocial support, patients’ anxiety levels were significantly improved. The effect was less pronounced among older and less educated patients, which points to the implications of targeted initiatives to improve the care of these groups.
How can this new knowledge contribute to the improvement of people’s health?
The rapid increase in digital solutions targeting patients hold several advantages but the potential drawbacks for vulnerable groups such as older and less educated patients has not gained sufficient attention in the debate on digitalization. By engaging patients in the design and development of eHealth products, the end product is more likely to correspond to the needs of the end users. Our method of combining eHealth with psychosocial support provides insights that may be transferrable to other surgical fields.
What are your future ambitions?
I hope to be able to combine research with my clinical work as a nurse, and hopefully stimulate and support colleagues in initiatives to improve the care of our patients.