Analysis Of Merle H. Mishel 's Uncertainty Theory Essay

1235 Words Sep 4th, 2014 5 Pages
According to Smith (2008), uncertainty theory proposes that uncertainty exists in situations that are ambiguous, hard to predict, and when information is not accessible. The purpose of this paper is to discuss Merle H. Mishel’s uncertainty theory, factors that can potentially influence uncertainty, uncertainty and its potential influence on the patient, and uncertainty theory’s relevance in nursing.
According to Smith (2008), Mishel defined uncertainty as the inability to determine the meaning of illness-related events, occurring when the decision maker is unable to assign definite value to objects or events, or is unable to predict outcomes accurately. According to Fitzpatrick and Norbeck (1997), Mishel’s first theory was developed to address uncertainty of an illness during diagnosis (uncertainty theory), while the second was developed to evaluate circumstances of someone living with continuous uncertainty (uncertainty theory re-conceptualized). For Mishel’s first theory, the end goal for the patient is to return to their previous stage of adaptation, while the end goal for the second theory is for the patient to transition into a completely new value system.
Fitzpatrick and Norbeck (1997) found that the three main themes in Mishel’s first uncertainty theory include antecedents (antecedents are the subjective interpretation of the disease with reference to the stimuli, symptoms, and other variables), appraisal (assigning value to uncertainty), and coping with…

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