Rebuilding and Guiding the Self With Spirituality: A Grounded Theory of Experiences of Adolescents and Young Adults With Cancer

Gürsu O., GÜRCAN M., Turan S. A.

Oncology Nursing Forum, vol.50, no.4, pp.487-497, 2023 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 50 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1188/23.onf.487-497
  • Journal Name: Oncology Nursing Forum
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, CINAHL, Psycinfo, Public Affairs Index
  • Page Numbers: pp.487-497
  • Keywords: adolescent and young adult, cancer, grounded theory, nursing, spirituality
  • Akdeniz University Affiliated: Yes


PURPOSE: To clarify the experiences of spirituality among adolescents and young adults (AYAs) with cancer following diagnosis. PARTICIPANTS & SETTING: Participants were recruited at a clinic and on an oncology unit in Turkey. A combination of purposive sampling and theoretical sampling strategy was used to identify 14 participants. METHODOLOGIC APPROACH: A grounded theory design was used for this study. Semistructured interviews were conducted with each participant between October 2021 and January 2022. The data were analyzed using open, axial, and selective coding. FINDINGS: All the participants were Muslim, were aged 15–39 years, spoke Turkish, and had undergone treatment for any type of cancer. The core category was identified as rebuilding and guiding the self with spirituality. AYAs connected more closely with their sense of spirituality after being diagnosed with cancer. IMPLICATIONS FOR NURSING: This study demonstrated the importance of providing a supportive healing environment to address the spiritual dimension of the cancer experience for AYAs. Individualized interventions ensuring an appropriate level of spiritual care based on clinical standards are essential to meet the needs of patients and ensure positive long-term health outcomes.