Experiences of fathers regarding the diagnosis of their child with autism spectrum disorder: A narrative review of the international research

Michael Brown, Lynne Marsh, Edward Mccann

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Abstract

Aim and objectives
The aim of this systematic review was to identify the views and experiences of fathers regarding their child's Autism Spectrum Disorder diagnosis.

Background
The diagnosis of a child's Autism Spectrum Disorder may be a stressful experience, creating uncertainty for parents. There has been a limited research focus on the views and experiences of fathers in relation to the diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder of their child.

Design
A systematic literature review of quantitative, qualitative and mixed‐methods research studies.

Data Sources
Academic Search Complete, CINAHL, MEDLINE and PsycINFO.

Methods
From August to October 2020, two authors independently performed a systematic data extraction and appraised the studies using a recognised instrument. The PRISMA checklist was used in the review.

Results
Nine papers met the inclusion criteria. Four themes emerged: (a) gradual recognition of developmental delay, (b) an emotional time, (c) coping and adaptation and (d) ongoing adjustments to the fathering role.

Conclusions
Nurses and other professionals need to work collaboratively with fathers to improve their experiences and provide supports at the time of Autism Spectrum Disorder diagnosis.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Clinical Nursing
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 05 May 2021

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