An ethnographic exploration of postoperative pain experiences among Ghanaian surgical patients
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The experience of pain associated with surgery has been a challenge for health care professionals for many years, and culture is said to influence pain. Purpose: This study focused on patients’ experiences of postoperative pain (POP) and factors that affect POP. Design: The study employed qualitative ethnographic principles. Method: Data were collected through individual face-to-face interviews. Data were saturated after analyzing data from 13 patients from two hospitals in Ghana. Findings: Themes that emerged were the subjective nature of pain, which described pain dimensions and communication; psycho-sociocultural factors, such as personal inclinations and sociocultural background; and health system factors, such as personnel attitudes and health financing. Implications for Future Research and Practice: Health professionals need to understand the sociocultural effects of pain in order to give effective care. Conclusion: The study highlighted the need for patient education and the importance that health care professionals understand context-specific factors that influence POP management.