Creating a language for 'spiritual pain' through research: A beginning

McGrath P. (2002) Creating a language for 'spiritual pain' through research: A beginning. Supportive Care in Cancer, 10 8: 637-646. doi:10.1007/s00520-002-0360-5

Author McGrath P.
Title Creating a language for 'spiritual pain' through research: A beginning
Journal name Supportive Care in Cancer   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0941-4355
Publication date 2002-01-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1007/s00520-002-0360-5
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 10
Issue 8
Start page 637
End page 646
Total pages 10
Subject 2730 Oncology
2900 Nursing
Abstract The findings presented in this discussion seek to make a contribution to fostering an appreciation of the importance of research on spirituality, a previously neglected dimension of health care. Qualitative research methodology based on open-ended interviews with 12 survivors of haematological malignancies was used. The interviews were transcribed verbatim and thematically analysed using the NUD*IST computer package. The preliminary findings from the study indicate a need for the development of a new language for articulating spirituality. The present discussion is an introductory attempt to begin to explore the notion of, and language for, the idea of 'spiritual pain'. The findings indicate that individuals need a strong sense of meaning-making and connection with life to be able to deal with the demands of aggressive, invasive treatments. Such a connection can be threatened by a break with the normal or expected relationships and satisfaction with life through physical, identity, relational and existential challenges and losses. When the disconnection is acutely painful (a subjective phenomenon depending on the individual) it then is experienced as spiritual pain, creating a void that challenges the individual's ability to derive any meaning from their existence. This study is seen as preliminary work, the first step in a series of articles aimed at beginning to develop, through research, a language of spiritual care.
Keyword Haematology
Spiritual pain
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Unknown

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: Scopus Import - Archived
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 26 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 39 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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