Case Study: Introduction to Qualitative Research i
(line 1) When I was bathing, I found a hard spot in my breast. I think my heart stopped and I (line 2) began sobbing. I felt as if I was dying and I started crying [participant has tears in her eyes]. (line 3) Finally, I told myself that it could be nothing and made myself finish bathing. It was late at night so I (line 4) knew that if I called the doctor’s office, there would be no answer. So, I waited…that was a (line 5) miserable night. My husband was gone and I was all alone…..except for God. I fell asleep praying to (line 6) God that what I had found would end up being nothing. I woke up the next morning, feeling like (line 7) I had been beaten because I hurt in every part of my body…where my heart was supposed to be (line 8) [participant places hand over her heart] felt like a big hole. I called the doctor’s office at 8 am (line 9) and told the person who answered that I had to see the doctor. She said I could have an (line 10) appointment in 2 weeks. I told her that I had found a lump and I thought I would go mad if I had to wait (line 11) 2 weeks. She put me on hold and went to see what could be done. I sat and prayed and waited. (line 12) When she came back on the line, she said that the nurse practitioner would see me at 11 am. (line 13) I hung up and realized that it was Monday and I was supposed to be at work. I called the (line 14) office and told the manager that I had an emergency and could not come in today. I could not (line 15) bring myself to say what the emergency was….I was not ready for anyone to know. If someone (line 16) else knew, it might be real and I wanted it all to be a bad dream that would be over soon. (line 17) I don’t remember what I did until 10 am when it was time to leave for the doctor’s clinic. I (line 18) arrived early and sat in the waiting room turning the pages of a magazine….it must have been (line 19) an hour before the nurse came to the waiting room and called my name. (line 20) I sat down in the exam room and began to cry. The nurse practitioner had not come in (line 21) yet….she was surprised to see me crying when she opened my door. The first words out of my (line 22) mouth were that my mother had died last year from breast cancer and I found a lump in my (line 23) breast. The next thing I remember I was being given a sedative. The nurse had gotten the (line 24) number of a friend from my telephone and called my friend to come to the doctor’s office to pick (line 25) me up. I knew the friend I told them to call was a kind soul and she would not ask a lot of (line 26) questions but drop what she was doing to come. (line 27) The doctor came in when I was drifting in and out of sleep on the table. My breast was (line 28) uncovered and the nurse had washed and washed it to get it all ready. I could not hold my eyes (line 29) open….I was so sleepy…but I wanted her to cover my breast. I felt naked and did not want (line 30) everyone coming in and out to see my breast. I must have fallen asleep because when I woke up, (line 31) there was a bandage on my breast and it hurt so bad. The nurse said I could go…..my friend was (line 32) here to take me home…I could not think…and she helped me up and led me to where my friend (line 33) was waiting…I had tears running down my face….I could not seem to stop crying. My friend (line 34) took my hand and led me to her car….just then I realized I drove my car and had no way of (line 35) getting it home. She said not to worry…she would take care of it. (line 36) At home, my friend asked if I had called my husband…I started crying again….how would I (line 37) ever tell him…I did not even know the diagnosis yet. I knew he would be so worried and rush (line 38) home…but we needed his job. I said I would wait until I knew something…then I thought how (line 39) mad my husband would be that I had not called. But I knew he would worry and be driving (line 40) home all worried and might get in a crash…I would never be able to stand that. (line 41) The medicine the doctor gave me was very strong and all I wanted to do was sleep. I (line 42) woke up and it was dark in my room and my husband was sitting on my bed. I asked him how he got (line 43) there and he said my friend had called and said I needed him…I started crying again…I thought (line 44) all my tears were gone but they kept coming…(line 45) I must have fallen asleep again because I woke up when the telephone rang. My husband (line 46) answered and handed the phone to me. It was the doctor. He tried to be nice but I knew it was (line 47) bad news….he said I should come in the morning to the hospital so they could run some more (line 48) tests…I was glad for the medicine the doctor gave me for pain…I hung up and took another pill. (line 49) I was too tired to think and just wanted to cry.
Review the case study and mark the words that indicate an emotion or a behavior related to an emotion experienced by the woman. Make a note of the line number in which the word occurs.
List probes or statements the interviewer might use to keep the woman talking about being diagnosed.
In the case study, the qualitative approach was identified to be exploratory-descriptive qualitative with the inference that the interview had been done recently. What additional sources of data would you collect if the qualitative approach used in the study had been historical with the aim of describing the oncology nurse’s role in the 1960s?