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The Illness Experiences of Chinese Patients Living With Lymphoma

A Qualitative Study

Ruan, Jiayin, MSN, RN; Qian, Ying, BSN, RN; Zhuang, Yiyu, MSN, RN; Zhou, Yunxian, PhD, RN

doi: 10.1097/NCC.0000000000000717
Article: PDF Only

Background Lymphoma patients encounter many problems. Studies investigating the illness experiences of Chinese patients with lymphoma are limited.

Objective The objectives of this study were to explore the illness experiences of lymphoma patients in China and describe the impacts of this disease on the everyday lives of these individuals.

Methods A descriptive qualitative design was used. The data were collected through face-to-face semistructured interviews and analyzed using the conventional content analysis method.

Results Nine men and 7 women participated in this study. The following 6 themes emerged: (1) cancer diagnosis reactions, (2) self-image altered, (3) interpersonal relationships influenced, (4) career development hindered, (5) life philosophy changed, and (6) personal growth achieved.

Conclusions This study contributes new knowledge to the understanding of the illness experiences of lymphoma patients within the Chinese social and cultural context. This study also reveals how these individuals cope with the complex problems they face.

Implications for Practice Nurses could help Chinese patients with lymphoma accept the disease and its treatments by emphasizing the importance of family integrity. Information, such as how to act in response to workplace discrimination, should be provided to patients by oncology nurses.

Author Affiliations: Sir Run Run Shaw Hospital, Zhejiang University School of Medicine (Mss Ruan, Qian, and Zhuang); and School of Nursing, Zhejiang Chinese Medical University, Hangzhou, PR China (Dr Zhou).

Correspondence: Yunxian Zhou, PhD, School of Nursing, Zhejiang Chinese Medical University, 548 Binwen Rd, Hangzhou 310053, PR China (

The authors have no conflicts of interest to disclose.

This research was funded by 2017 DAISY Foundation (primary investigator: Jiayin Ruan), contract grant number JPB-2017-03-A.

Accepted for publication February 28, 2019.

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