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How older people with incurable cancer experience daily living: A qualitative study from Norway
Innlandet Hosp Trust, Ctr Psychol Relig, Oslo, Norway.;Norwegian Sch Theol, Oslo, Norway..
Innlandet Hosp Trust, Ctr Psychol Relig, Oslo, Norway.;Norwegian Sch Theol, Oslo, Norway..
Hedmark Univ Coll, Dept Publ Hlth, Inst Nursing & Mental Hlth, Elverum, Norway.;Nesna Univ Coll, Inst Nursing Educ, Nordland, Norway..
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Theology, Department of Theology, The Social Sciences of Religion, Psychology of Religions. Innlandet Hosp Trust, Ctr Psychol Relig, Oslo, Norway.;Norwegian Sch Theol, Oslo, Norway.;Uppsala Univ, Publ Mental Hlth Promot Area, IMPACT Res Program, Uppsala, Sweden..ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1248-9988
2015 (English)In: Palliative & Supportive Care, ISSN 1478-9515, E-ISSN 1478-9523, Vol. 13, no 4, 1037-1048 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Objective: An increasing number of older people are living with incurable cancer as a chronic disease, requiring palliative care from specialized healthcare for shorter or longer periods of time. The aim of our study was to describe how they experience daily living while receiving palliative care in specialized healthcare contexts. Method: We conducted a qualitative research study with a phenomenological approach called "systematic text condensation." A total of 21 participants, 12 men and 9 women, aged 70-88, took part in semistructured interviews. They were recruited from two somatic hospitals in southeastern Norway. Results: The participants experienced a strong link to life in terms of four subthemes: to acknowledge the need for close relationships; to maintain activities of normal daily life; to provide space for existential meaning-making and to name and handle decline and loss. In addition, they reported that specialized healthcare contexts strengthened the link to life by prioritizing and providing person-centered palliative care. Significance of results: Older people with incurable cancer are still strongly connected to life in their daily living. The knowledge that the potential for resilience remains despite aging and serious decline in health is considered a source of comfort for older people living with this disease. Insights into the processes of existential meaning-making and resilience are seen as useful in order to increase our understanding of how older people adapt to adversity, and how their responses may help to protect them from some of the difficulties inherent to aging. Healthcare professionals can make use of this information in treatment planning and for identification of psychosocial and sociocultural resources to support older people and to strengthen patients' life resources.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 13, no 4, 1037-1048 p.
Keyword [en]
Cancer, Palliative care, Aging, Phenomenology, Experience
National Category
Cancer and Oncology
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-304585DOI: 10.1017/S1478951514001011ISI: 000360629100025PubMedID: 25159499OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-304585DiVA: diva2:1033417
Available from: 2016-10-06 Created: 2016-10-06 Last updated: 2016-10-06Bibliographically approved

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DeMarinis, Valerie
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