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Table 2 Definition of themes and examples

From: Illness perceptions in the context of differing work participation outcomes: exploring the influence of significant others in persistent back pain

Theme title and definition Example quotation from working sample Example quotation from non-working sample
1. Consequences of illness “It doesn’t impact on anything, ‘cos he doesn’t not do anything because he’s got pain” “Like making a cup of tea, I’ll say ‘Are you alright, be careful’, I say, ‘Can I help?’ and I know I can’t help at all”
Extent to which participants reported that the patient’s back pain impacted on their everyday life and activities
2. Nature of work “My immediate line manager is very supportive” “There weren’t really a lot they could find she could do”
Ways in which the nature of patient participants’ particular professions were reported as impacting on whether or not patients had been able to continue in employment with back pain.
3. Patient identity “He has this determination where he won’t let it, he won’t give in to it and he won’t let it beat him” “His workmates thought ‘There’s nowt wrong with you, you’re sat down, you’re walking around’, but once he’s sat down, he’s got pain but they can’t see that”
Refers to participants’ depictions of the patient in relation to their self-management of their back pain condition – hero or victim narrative?