+ Resolve Article
+ Follow Us
Follow on FacebookFollow on Facebook
Follow on TwitterFollow on Twitter

+ Translate
+ Subscribe to Site Feed
GeoScience Most Shared ContentMost Shared Content

Dying cancer patients' experiences of powerlessness and helplessness

, : Dying cancer patients' experiences of powerlessness and helplessness. Supportive Care in Cancer 16(7): 853-862

Experiences of powerlessness and helplessness are closely linked to incurable diseases but seldom studied in patients with disseminated cancer. The aim is to explore the perception, experiences and significance of powerlessness and helplessness, to study triggering factors and to make quantifications. One hundred three patients, enrolled in four different palliative home-care settings, completed a questionnaire with both Likert-type questions and open-ended questions. The response rate was 58%, and background data was reported as frequencies, whereas the main material was analysed using a qualitative content analysis. Impending death, symptoms, loss of control and autonomy, ignorance, isolation and uncertainty constituted the basis for powerlessness and helplessness, but each factor was reinforced by the occurrence of suddenness, high intensity and/or lengthiness. In total, 65% reported definite experiences of powerlessness and helplessness. These feelings also held a deeper meaning, involving aspects such as existential loneliness and hopelessness. They were ultimately caused by an incapacity to control feelings and cope with the situation related to the impending death. The results are discussed in relation to Cassel's theory of suffering and existential psychology.


PMID: 18026998

DOI: 10.1007/s00520-007-0359-z

Other references

Burusic, J.; Sakic, M.; Koprtla, N., 2014: Parental perceptions of adolescent health behaviours Experiences from Croatian high schools. The aim of this study was to explore parental perceptions of adolescent health behaviours and to examine to what extent parents’ perceptions of their children’s health behaviours are determined by the family’s socio-demographic c...

Rouse, B.A.; Ewing, J.A., 1973: Marijuana and other drug use by women college students: associated risk taking and coping activities. American Journal of Psychiatry 130(4): 486-491

Zhang, X.; Xie, X.; Qu, D.; Ning, J.; Zhou, H.; Pan, J.; Yang, G., 2015: Determining organ dose conversion coefficients for external neutron irradiation by using a voxel mouse model. A set of fluence-to-dose conversion coefficients has been calculated for neutrons with energies <20 MeV using a developed voxel mouse model and Monte Carlo N-particle code (MCNP), for the purpose of neutron radiation effect evaluation. The calc...

Thaete, L.G.; Khan, S.; Synowiec, S.; Dayton, B.D.; Bauch, J.; Neerhof, M.G., 2013: Endothelin receptor antagonist has limited access to the fetal compartment during chronic maternal administration late in pregnancy. Endothelin receptor A (ET(A)) antagonism normalizes fetal growth in several models of rodent fetal growth restriction (FGR). Our aims were to determine the levels of ET(A) antagonist in maternal and fetal plasma following chronic maternal administ...

Wang, Y.; Klemke, R.L., 2012: Proteomics method for identification of pseudopodium phosphotyrosine proteins. Cell migration requires actin/myosin-mediated membrane protrusion of a pseudopodium (or lamellipodium) and its attachment to the substratum. This process guides the direction of cell movement through cytoskeletal remodeling and is regulated by com...

Kono, S.; Deguchi, K.; Omote, Y.; Yunoki, T.; Yamashita, T.; Kurata, T.; Ikeda, Y.; Abe, K., 2014: Reducing hemorrhagic complication by dabigatran via neurovascular protection after recanalization with tissue plasminogen activator in ischemic stroke of rat. This study assesses the risks and benefits of tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) treatment under oral anticoagulation with dabigatran compared with warfarin or vehicle control in transient middle cerebral artery occlusion (tMCAO). After pretreatme...

Kornblum S.; Osman A.M., 1985: Determinants of sequential effects in choice reaction time. Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society 23(4): 292

Lee, D.; Purkey, M., 2001: Youth tobacco use and control efforts in West Virginia. West Virginia Medical Journal 97(1): 56-59

Bjercke, O.; Christensen, O.; Gedde-Dahl, T., 1971: The standpoint of the Committee for Superannuation Benefits. Tidsskrift for den Norske Laegeforening 91(18): 1425-1428

Vybornov, RV.; Yakovchuk, TN., 1984: The safety of lepidopteran bacculoviruses for ladybirds (Cycloneda limbifer Gasey).. Izvestiya Akademii Nauk Tadzhikskoi SSR Otdelenie Biologicheskikh Nauk, 4: 81-83