Using metaphors to study occupational transitions: a case study of an injured worker with multiple chemical sensitivity.
The University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, Canada. firstname.lastname@example.org
BACKGROUND: The aim of this case study was to explore transitions of an injured worker suffering from multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS), and his lived experiences in learning to function in everyday life with this injury. To date, little research exists about the transitions of a worker to an injured worker beyond the focus of strategies in returning to work and rehabilitation. METHODS: The injured worker's perspective was captured through the use of metaphors in understanding the transition processes of participating in daily life without work. Metaphors were used to facilitate this injured worker's expression of deep thoughts and feelings, and to allow for different and abstract ways of thinking about disability and illness. FINDINGS: Metaphors were identified within several transitions involved in the process of going from a worker to an injured worker functioning in daily life. CONCLUSIONS: The findings from this case study can be shared with others as a means of increasing the awareness of the experiences in managing daily life when living with MCS. In addition, insights from this injured worker's case could act as a venue for distributing knowledge about chemical injuries to health care professionals to broaden their views of this injury and its treatment.
PMID: 19478417 [PubMed - in process]