Bisphosphonate therapy and osteogenesis imperfecta: The lived experience of children and their mothers

Shirley Wiggins, Rose Kreikemeier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Purpose: Osteogenesis imperfecta (OI) is a chronic, genetic condition frequently described as “brittle bones.” This condition is expressed by low bone density and characterized by frequent fractures with and without trauma. Additional symptoms include pain, altered growth, and challenges with mobility. This experience has a great impact on the daily life of the child diagnosed with OI and their family. With the introduction of bisphosphonate therapy children diagnosed with OI experienced an increase in bone density that included a change in symptoms and improvement in daily functioning. The purpose of this study was to describe the lived experience of children receiving bisphosphonate therapy for osteogenesis imperfecta (OI) and their mothers. Design and Methods: A phenomenological study was conducted using interviews with a purposive sample of six children diagnosed with OI and their six mothers (N = 12). Children ranged in age from 6 to 18 years. The Giorgi (2009) methodology was used to discover the meaning of living day to day since initiating the bisphosphonate infusion therapy. Results: Four themes emerged from the synthesis of the meaning units that reflected the experience that bisphosphonate therapy had on daily life with OI. These four themes explicitly described the phenomena being studied and included living daily life in stride; normalcy is living with uncertainty; renewal with infusions; and making choices and living with the consequences. Practice Implications: Nurses must take an active role in developing and promoting family-centered interventions for transition and support.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere12192
JournalJournal for Specialists in Pediatric Nursing
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2017


  • bisphosphonates
  • children
  • family-centered support
  • lived experience
  • osteogenesis imperfecta
  • transition

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics


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