Date of Award

Fall 1982

Degree Type

Thesis - Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)




Man is a biopsychosocial being who is in constant interaction with a changing environment. A myocardial infraction is an event which requires adaptation as a total being to maintain integrity. With improved diagnostic and treatment measures, adaptation to the biological threat is a probable reality. However, the literature supports that a substantial proportion of the post-myocardial infarction population are functioning at a suboptimal level due to psychosocial factors. Therefore, it is important to identify factors which influence adaptation psychologically and socially, as well as biologically in order to promote man's adaptation as a whole to the event of myocardial infarction. This study was designed to identify focal stimuli in the psychosocial mode of self-concept which influence adaptation to myocardial infarction. A convenience sample of individuals experiencing an initial myocardial infraction was obtained from four Milwaukee area hospitals. Two tape-recorded interviews were conducted with each participant utilizing an interview format suggested by the Roy adaptation model for nursing and developed by the researcher. The first interview took place in hospital at approximately one week post-myocardial infarction. The second interview took place in the participant's home at approximately six weeks post-myocardial infarction. The interview guide consisted of open-ended questions designed to elicit responses for each component of self-concept as described in the Roy adaptation model for nursing: physical self; personal self which is further divided into moral-ethical self, self-consistency, and self-ideal/self-expectancy; and self-esteem. The responses were then transcribed and categorized for each area of self-concept. Focal stimuli influencing adaptation to MI were identified for each component of self-concept and suggest possible diagnostic categories. The findings of this study have potential functional use in validating Roy's conceptual model for nursing practice.