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Sch Inq Nurs Pract. 1999 Summer;13(2):75-95; discussion 97-103, 105-9.

Analysis and evaluation of the Trajectory Theory of Chronic Illness Management.

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University of Pennsylvania, School of Nursing, USA.


The development and testing of theories for use in nursing research and practice is essential for advancement of the profession. The Trajectory Theory of Chronic Illness Management is a middle-range nursing theory that has been proposed by Corbin and Strauss (1991a). Analysis and evaluation of this theory was performed using Fawcett and Downs's (1992) guidelines. Theory analysis and evaluation are important first steps before using a theory for practical purposes. Theory analysis makes a theory more understandable and helps to identify the strengths and weaknesses of the theory. Evaluation extends the analysis process by making judgments about the potential contribution of the theory based on published data. Results of the theory analysis and evaluation suggest that the Trajectory Theory has theoretical and social significance but that further theoretical work is necessary to enhance the internal consistency and parsimony of the theory. Although several authors have suggested that the theory has pragmatic adequacy, evidence for empirical adequacy of the theory is needed. Before more empirical studies are conducted, further theoretical work is recommended.

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