Advanced cancer Dying End of life Palliative Theory Qualitative Secondary analysis Constant comparative analysis Europe
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons: Atribution Noncomercial License (cc BY NC)
Carvajal, A. (Ana)
Literature suggests that it is possible to live well with advanced cancer but little is known about the process. In this article, we present a secondary analysis of experiences of living with advanced cancer (n = 22) that refines the theory of “Living Well with Chronic Illness” for a different context and population. The refined theory explains the experience of living well with advanced cancer illuminating a five-phase iterative process: struggling, accepting, living with advanced cancer, sharing the illness experience, and reconstructing life. These five phases revolve around the core concept of Awareness of Dying, which varied from awareness of the possibility of dying, to accepting the possibility of dying, to acceptance that “I am dying.” Awareness of Dying led to a focus on living well with advanced cancer and movement towards living a life rather than living an illness.