Aims and objectives. To investigate the effects of a planned group interaction method on the social adjustment of individuals with an intestinal stoma.
Background. Individuals with a stoma often experience physiological, psychological and social problems that affect their social adaptation.
Methods. The population included ileostomy and colostomy patients registered at the Gazi University Health Research and Implementation Centre Stoma therapy Unit between September 2011-June 2012. They were assigned to experimental (n = 23) and control (n = 27) groups based on their willingness to attend planned group interaction meetings. Experimental group members participated in the 'planned group interaction method' for six weeks. Control group members only received routine care services. Weekly group interaction meetings lasted for average of 90 minutes. The Ostomy Adjustment Inventory and Psychosocial Adjustment to Illness Scale-Self-Report Scale were administered to experimental group members on three occasions: prior to the first group meeting, after the six-week meeting process ended and during the first month after group meetings ended. Control group evaluations were conducted simultaneously.
Results. Experimental group members' ostomy adjustment mean scores after planned group interaction meetings gradually increased. No changes occurred in the control group's average scores. The experimental and control groups' average psychosocial adjustment scores eventually changed and showed a tendency towards adjustment. Experimental group members aged 51-60 and 61-70, who were married, had primary and higher education, had permanent stomas, had stomas for periods between 12 months or less and 61 months and longer and had sufficient stoma care knowledge demonstrated higher adjustment values (p < 0.05). Furthermore, experimental group members reported they received psychological support during interactions and learned how to solve problems encountered in stoma care and daily life.
Conclusions. Planned group interactions effectively enhanced the social adjustment of patients with a stoma.
Relevance to clinical practice. Group interaction methods should be included in nursing care practices for individuals with a stoma.