Distressing Factors Experienced by Jordanian Adolescents with Cancer: A Qualitative Study
Ghada Mohammad Abu Shosha
Department of Child Health Nursing, Faculty of Nursing, Zarqa University – Jordan
Abstract: Background: Cancer is the second cause of death after cardiovascular diseases in Jordan. The outset of the disease is a traumatic life event as cancer patients encounter many stressors resulting from cancer diagnosis, medical interventions, and treatment downside effects. Aim: This study aimed to explore distressing factors experienced by Jordanian adolescents with cancer who are undergoing chemotherapy. Method: A qualitative exploratory design was used to gain an understanding about this phenomenon. Fifteen adolescents were recruited purposively from two major cancer treatment centers in Amman, the capital of Jordan. Data were gathered through semi-structured, face-to-face interviews allowing participants to speak freely about their own experiences. These interviews were transcribed verbatim and translated from Arabic into English. Dataset was analyzed using the inductive thematic analysis technique. Results: The study revealed many sources of distress that adolescents were engaged with. These sources were organized into three major themes: "Physical-related stressors", "Emotional-related stressors", and "Treatment-related stressors". However, participants demonstrated mastery to adapt with their stressors using some adaptation strategies which have formed the fourth theme "Enhancing normality". Conclusion: Cancer has a tremendous impact on adolescents' lives. Religion and social support were key factors that helped adolescents to continue living comfortably with their distressing situation. Nurses are encouraged to develop such social networks between patients and their healthy peers to enhance their sense of normality. In addition, nurses should appraise patients' specific problems, making purposeful plans, and initiating timely nursing intervention.
[Ghada Mohammad Abu Shosha. Distressing Factors Experienced by Jordanian Adolescents with Cancer: A Qualitative Study. J Am Sci 2013;9(6):308-316]. (ISSN: 1545-1003). http://www.jofamericanscience.org. 36
Keywords: Cancer, Distress, Adolescents, Jordan, Nursing. Full Text 36