Stress in families with medically fragile children

Issues Compr Pediatr Nurs. 2002 Jul-Sep;25(3):167-88. doi: 10.1080/01460860290042558.


The literature related to the stress experienced by families who care for medically fragile children is analyzed. A model is generated from themes identified in the research literature. Four core themes were identified under which most of the stressors identified in the literature could be grouped. These are role conflict, financial burden, care burden, and independence. These are in turn arranged as a matrix in which the family, the child, the care professional, and health care system interact dynamically with the four core themes. The Family Stress/Task Matrix has the potential for facilitating research related to models that include a family-centered view among health professional and systems.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Child Welfare*
  • Chronic Disease / psychology*
  • Cost of Illness
  • Family / psychology*
  • Family Health
  • Home Nursing / psychology
  • Humans
  • Life Change Events
  • Mental Health
  • Models, Psychological
  • Needs Assessment
  • Nursing Methodology Research
  • Patient-Centered Care / organization & administration
  • Risk Factors
  • Social Support
  • Stress, Psychological / etiology
  • Stress, Psychological / prevention & control
  • Stress, Psychological / psychology*