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Index de Enfermería

versión impresa ISSN 1132-1296


MARTORELL-POVEDA, Mª Antonia et al. Alzheimer: Significance, sense and care from a transcultural perspective. Index Enferm [online]. 2010, vol.19, n.2-3, pp.106-110. ISSN 1132-1296.

Objective: In this paper, the interest for exploring the living experiences, representations and social practices of family members of persons who have Alzheimer disease within different cultural contexts is outlined. Seen from three concrete empiric polls, our objective is to analyze how family-member care takers identify, designate and interpret the disease and how they establish and develop care strategies. With this in mind, the care taking family member experience in the city of Tarragona (Spain), in the Parish of Santa Lucia, Municipality of Maracaibo of the State Zulia (Venezuela) and in Cuernavaca (Mexico) are compared. Methods: Based on a qualitative methodology, focused on the actor's point of view, the meetings with the care taking family, have allowed us grasp the sense and the significance that the disease and the care involved in the domestic field have upon them. The participating observation and in depth interviews were used as a basic strategy for gathering information. Also, in the Tarragona and Cuernavaca cases, focal group sessions were carried out. Results: The comparative analysis shows the influence that the hegemonic biomedical discourse has upon the family member's knowledge. In the three cultural contexts, we found several common grounds in the living experiences, representations and social practices of the family members, with few changes allowing us to speak of social-cultural differences with respect to the manifestations and perceptions regarding insanity. Conclusions: Thus the similarities found give us reason to believe in how there is a tendency to a globalization of a discourse on what has been considered to be the "XXI century epidemic". We conclude that the hegemony of the biomedical discourse has influence on the fact that the senses, significances and cares of family caregivers of persons with Alzheimer disease in different cultural contexts tend to be similar. Therefore it is necessary to legitimate the knowledge in possession of the family members because they are experienced caregivers.

Palabras clave : Representations; Practical social; Caregivers; Alzheimer.

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