Expressed desire for hastened death in seven patients living with advanced cancer: a phenomenologic inquiry
Language: 
English
Short Title: 
Expressed desire for hastened death in seven patients living with advanced cancer
Abstract: 

PURPOSE/OBJECTIVES: To explore the meanings and uses of an expressed desire for hastened death in seven patients living with advanced cancer. DESIGN: A phenomenologic inquiry. SETTING: Urban cancer research center. SAMPLE: Terminally ill patients with cancer who had expressed a desire for hastened death. METHODS: A series of in-depth semistructured interviews were audiotaped, transcribed, coded, and organized into themes. FINDINGS: The expression of desire for hastened death had many meanings and uses and communicated the following: (a) a manifestation of the will to live, (b) a dying process so difficult that an early death was preferred, (c) an intolerable immediate situation, even if not specifically identified by a patient, required immediate action, (d) a hastened death could extract a patient from an unendurable and specific situation, (e) manifestation of the last control the dying can exert, (f) a way of drawing attention to "me as a unique individual," (g) a gesture of altruism, (h) an attempt at manipulation of the family to avoid abandonment, and (i) a despairing cry depicting the misery of the current situation. CONCLUSIONS: Expression of desire for hastened death has many meanings and uses and is a tool of communication. IMPLICATIONS FOR NURSING: Listening to the patient's story will help nurses understand what is being asked for through the expression of a desire for hastened death.

Author(s): 
Coyle, Nessa
Sculco, Lois
Item Type: 
Journal Article
Publication Title: 
Oncology Nursing Forum
Journal Abbreviation: 
Oncol Nurs Forum
Publication Date: 
2004-07
Publication Year: 
2004
Pages: 
699-709
Volume: 
31
Issue: 
4
ISSN: 
1538-0688
DOI: 
10.1188/04.ONF.699-709
Library Catalog: 
PubMed
Extra: 
PMID: 15252426

Turabian/Chicago Citation

Nessa Coyle and Lois Sculco. 2004-07. "Expressed desire for hastened death in seven patients living with advanced cancer: a phenomenologic inquiry." Oncology Nursing Forum 31: 4: 699-709. 10.1188/04.ONF.699-709.

Wikipedia Citation

<ref> {{Cite journal | doi = 10.1188/04.ONF.699-709 | issn = 1538-0688 | volume = 31 | pages = 699-709 | last = Coyle | first = Nessa | coauthors = Sculco, Lois | title = Expressed desire for hastened death in seven patients living with advanced cancer: a phenomenologic inquiry | journal = Oncology Nursing Forum | date = 2004-07 | pmid = | pmc = }} </ref>