Objectives. To explore the experiences of people with Parkinson's (PwP) who suffer from constipation, the impact this has on their lives, and the effect of using lifestyle changes and abdominal massage as a form of constipation management. Method. Fourteen semistructured interviews were completed (8 males and 6 females; mean age 72.2 years) at the end of a care programme, which consisted of either lifestyle advice and abdominal massage (intervention group; n=7) or lifestyle advice only (control group; n=7). Data were analysed using constant-comparison techniques and Framework methods. Themes and key quotes were identified to depict major findings. Findings. Four key themes were identified: (i) the adverse impact of bowel problems on quality of life; (ii) positive experience of behaviour adjustments: experimentation; (iii) abdominal massage as a dynamic and relaxing tool: experiential learning (intervention group only); (iv) abdominal massage as a contingency plan: hesitation (control group only). Constipation was reported as having a significant impact on quality of life. Participants in both groups perceived lifestyle advice to relieve symptoms. Specific improvements were described in those who also received the abdominal massage. Conclusions. Both lifestyle advice and abdominal massage were perceived to be beneficial in relieving symptoms of constipation for PwP.
- neurogenic bowel
- abdominal massage