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Table 3 Biological/physical impact of ESRD and dialysis

From: Biopsychosocial experiences and coping strategies of elderly ESRD patients: a qualitative study to inform the development of more holistic and person-centred health services in Singapore

Theme Subtheme Verbatim extracts
General symptoms Dyspnoea “When I was sitting upright, I was fine. But when I was sleeping, I had trouble breathing.” [PB31_Huang_M _HD]
Dizziness “His blood pressure will be very low after dialysis, at around 80. He’ll feel dizzy and weak.” [C1PB31_Alice_F_HD_Godchild]
Oedema “I was all swollen, my leg, my hand, even my feet, all swollen with water. What to do? So swollen I can’t walk, so have to go for dialysis, that’s how I started.” [PB11_Siew Leng_F_HD]
Nausea and appetite loss “Keep on diarrhoea, vomiting and swelling everywhere...so warded GH here, then, at last, I can’t eat.” [PB11_Siew Leng_F_HD]
Neuromuscular symptoms Muscular aches “I went for dialysis this morning and my hip is aching now. I can’t walk.” [PB09_Ai Jia_F_HD]
Muscular weakness “I feel healthy but not so strong... if walking I must hold on something otherwise I feel tottery.” [PC10_Nur_F_PD]
Skin problems Itchy/dry skin “Then, the one time when I was dialysis on this ah, the time my body was very itchy...I hardly can sleep...that’s why my doctor prescribe this medication for me give me some drowsiness, then I have a good night sleep.” [PC16_Larry_M_PD]
Poor sleep quality Physical causes “So the machine wakes you up every two or three hours, I’m okay, but still it’s quite stressful. You don’t get good quality sleep so the next day you feel still very drowsy.” [PC11_Leong_M_PD]
Psychological causes “I couldn’t sleep for nights… Every night, I’d wake up every 2–3 h to think about it automatically. It’s a terrible thing… I was having sleepless nights thinking about it. It’s terrible as the same thing happened every day and every night; I couldn’t sleep.” [PA08_Bee Eng_F_ND]