Parantumatonta syöpää sairastavan potilaan selviytyminen: Elämää sairauden kanssa ja siitä huolimatta

Anu Viitala

Research output: Book/ReportDoctoral thesisCollection of Articles


The number of patients with incurable cancer is increasing every year as the population ages. Almost one in four deaths in Finland is caused by cancer. Although many cancers are still incurable, increasing numbers of patients live longer with the disease and oncologic therapies. Supporting this group of patients is crucial to ensure that they can cope as well as possible with life with and despite their disease.

The purpose of this study was to describe the coping of patients with incurable cancer during both the palliative care phase of cancer treatment and hospice care. The study aimed to provide information to support patients with incurable cancer to cope with their illness.

To describe the experiences of patients with incurable cancer regarding their coping the qualitative research design was used. The data consisted of a literature review and interview data. The participants in the study were 56 adult patients with incurable cancer. The interview method was a semi-structured interview. The review and interview data were analysed using inductive content analysis. Based on the results of the literature review, an interview guide was formed. A synthesis of the empirical data was formed with meta synthesis method.

According to the results, the most important coping factors for patients with incurable cancer were coping in everyday life through their life management, the experience of being in the best possible health, the help of various support options, and acceptance of the incurable nature of the disease. Coping was influenced at all stages of the disease by emotional coping and, on the other hand, by the occasional inconsistency of the health care support network.

The study provided insights into the coping of patients with incurable cancer from their perspective. It revealed patients’ expectations and problems with the service provided by healthcare organizations. The results will make the experiences, hopes, and expectations of incurable cancer patients more visible in public healthcare and help identify patients’ needs. The results may help patients with incurable cancer and their loved ones to understand their life situation. The results of the study can be used in a wide range of health care sectors to design services, in resourcing and to develop services for patients with incurable cancer.
Original languageFinnish
Place of PublicationTampere
ISBN (Electronic)978-952-03-3135-1
Publication statusPublished - 2023
Publication typeG5 Doctoral dissertation (articles)

Publication series

NameTampere University Dissertations - Tampereen yliopiston väitöskirjat
ISSN (Print)2489-9860
ISSN (Electronic)2490-0028

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