Children's experiences of living with asthma: fear of exacerbations and being ostracized

J Pediatr Nurs. 2011 Aug;26(4):295-303. doi: 10.1016/j.pedn.2010.05.003. Epub 2010 Jul 27.


The aim of the study was to explore children's experiences of asthma to tailor a learning program based on their perspectives. Fifteen children (7-10 years) were interviewed, and they narrated the meaning behind their drawings; a phenomenological hermeneutical approach was used in the analysis. The findings are described in two themes with five subthemes: fear of exacerbation (bodily sensations, frightening experiences, and loss of control) and fear of being ostracized (experiences of being excluded and dilemma of keeping the asthma secret or being open about it). Drawings are a good tool for initiating a dialogue with children.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological
  • Art
  • Asthma / physiopathology
  • Asthma / psychology*
  • Child
  • Fear / psychology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Qualitative Research
  • Social Isolation / psychology*
  • Stress, Psychological