This paper explores how young people who are living with a parent who is dying talk about the future. Drawing on a qualitative, interview study, I argue that young people are able to move imaginatively beyond the death of a parent, and in doing so, to maintain a sense of biographical continuity. While thinking about the future, most were able to generate an alternative to the ‘harm story’ typically associated with parental loss. Furthermore, the facility to engage with parental absence in the present enabled young people to make sense of living with dying, and gave meaning to their imagined futures. These findings suggest that young people's narratives of the future may act as a symbolic resource to draw on, albeit one requiring adequate material and social resources to construct. The paper extends the notion of continuing bonds derived from post-bereavement accounts to suggest that relational experiences of the dead begin prior to bereavement, and may facilitate everyday living in anticipation of significant loss. Enabling young people to imaginatively explore the future may support them in getting by when they are living in these difficult family circumstances.
Objective: The research project addressed the need to support young adults with issues relating to sexuality and relationships though the development of guidance and standards for practice.
Methods: An action research project underpinned by an interpretivist qualitative framework. Participants were recruited to the project via three hospices in the UK. Data from four focus groups were analysed thematically using a process of constant comparison.
Results: Sixteen young adults with life-limiting or life-threatening conditions aged 21–33 years participated in the study. Three significant themes were identified: sexuality and the transition to adulthood, recognising the significance of sex and relationships, and realising sexual rights.
Conclusion: Sexuality and relationships play an important role in the transition to adulthood for people with life-limiting or life-threatening conditions living in the UK. While young adults with these conditions may have considerable support needs, it is important to balance this with the freedom to exercise choice and to make independent decisions. Sex negativity can have an adverse impact on the experiences of young adults and creates barriers. Improved ongoing access to sex education and the provision of enabling environments that afford privacy and safety are important to support young adults with sexuality and relationships.
Stella Grant a dix-sept ans, et elle a passé une bonne partie de sa vie à l'hôpital. Atteinte de mucoviscidose, elle maîtrise scrupuleusement sa situation, enchaînant les to-do list, suivant ses traitements et les recommandations des médecins à la lettre. Alors qu'elle attend une greffe de poumons, elle retourne à l'hôpital pour quelques semaines. Alors qu'elle suit sa routine quotidienne, elle rencontre un nouveau patient, Will, atteint par la même maladie qu'elle.
Malheureusement, le jeune homme souffre également d'une bactérie fatale qui lui interdit toute chance d'obtenir une greffe de poumons. Si Stella l'attrape, elle peut dire adieu à la greffe. Les deux adolescents ont donc l'interdiction absolue de s'approcher à moins de deux mètres. Malgré cette obligation, Will et Stella se rapprochent peu à peu et tombent amoureux. Ils doivent alors user de stratagèmes pour semer les infirmières et passer du temps ensemble.
Très vite, cette distance entre eux ne rime plus avec sécurité, mais avec punition.
Paediatric palliative care (PPC) is regarded as standard care for children and young people (CYP) with life-limiting conditions (LLCs). There is a lack of knowledge about the rate of CYP with LLCs, hampering the development of PPC. This retrospective study aimed to examine population-based statistics of South Korean CYP with LLCs and the pattern of healthcare use and costs in their last year of life, analysing the National Health Insurance Service claims database for the period 2013–2015. In 2015, the number of CYP (=24 years old) living with LLCs was 133,177, with those who died accounting for 1,032. Prevalence of LLC and mortality rate per 100,000 were highest among under-1-age group (2,151.7 and 82.7, respectively). In the last year of life, 91.8% of deceased CYP with LLCs were hospitalized at least once and the average length of stay was 101.2 days (standard deviation = 104.1). Deceased CYP with cancer spent more on healthcare than non-cancer CYP (64,266 vs. 40,694 US dollar, p < 0.001). The average relevance index for CYP death related to LLCs was 55.9%. Our results provide baseline information on healthcare utilization and expenditure among CYP with LLCs, which is crucial data for designing evidence-based PPC policy and services.
Cette manifestation consacrée aux enfants, adolescents et jeunes adultes orphelins est une opportunité de mettre la lumière sur leur situation sociale et leur vécu. Placé sous le signe de l’action, cet événement est l’occasion de prendre connaissance des résultats inédits des sept projets de recherche soutenus par la Fondation OCIRP, du partenariat initié avec l'Institut national d'études démographiques (INED) et de l'enquête « École et orphelins », programme interne du pôle Études et recherche de la fondation. Cet événement est enfin l’occasion d’ouvrir un espace de débat entre chercheurs-es et acteurs mobilisés et concernés : praticiens, professionnels de l’action sociale et de la santé, enseignants et personnels de l’éducation, chercheurs, acteurs associatifs, responsables politiques, journalistes, représentants d’institutions publiques et d’organismes privés, et en particulier parents, enfants, adolescents et jeunes adultes orphelins et leurs proches.
Context: Research shows an increased symptom burden in young adult (YA) cancer patients compared with their older adult counterpart.
Objectives: The purpose of this study was to identify differences in clinical characteristics and related outcomes between YA and older adult cancer patients admitted for cancer-related pain.
Materials and Methods: We retrospectively identified 190 hospitalized patients in a single academic center with admissions for cancer-related pain. Patients were grouped into either "young adult" (18-39) or "older adult (>40) cohorts. We compared differences in patient characteristics and pain regimens.
Results: Median oral morphine equivalent per 24 hours was higher in the YA group (194 mg vs. 70 mg, p = 0.010). Younger patients received patient-controlled analgesia (PCA) more frequently (p = 0.023). The number of palliative care consults and adjuvants prescribed did not differ between groups (p > 0.05), althoughYAs more frequently had an inpatient pain anesthesia consult (p = 0.047).
Conclusion: Findings show increased opioid requirements and PCA use in YAs being treated for malignancy compared with their older adult counterpart.
PURPOSE: Adolescents and young adults (AYAs; age 15-39 years) with advanced cancer are a population in whom quality of life is uniquely affected because of their stage of life. However, training focused on palliative care for AYAs is not routinely provided for health care providers (HCPs) in oncology. This study aims to explore the experiences of HCPs involved in introducing and providing palliative care caring for AYAs with advanced cancer and their families to understand the unique challenges HCPs experience.
METHODS: Using a qualitative descriptive design, semistructured interviews were conducted with medical and radiation oncologists, palliative care physicians, psychiatrists, and advanced practice nurses involved in caring for AYAs diagnosed with advanced cancer (N = 19). Interviews were transcribed verbatim and analyzed using thematic analysis in combination with constant comparative analysis and theoretical sampling.
RESULTS: There were 19 participants, 9 men and 10 women, with a median age of 45 years (range, 24-67 years). Six were palliative care physicians, 5 medical oncologists, 4 nurse practitioners, and 2 each radiation oncologists and psychiatrists. Overall, participants perceived the provision of palliative care for AYAs to be more difficult compared with older adults. Four themes emerged: (1) challenges helping AYAs/families to engage in and accept palliative care, (2) uncertainty regarding how to involve the family, (3) HCP sense of tragedy, and (4) HCP sense of emotional proximity.
CONCLUSION: Findings from this study support the development of dedicated training for HCPs involved in palliative care for AYA.
Background: To the authors' knowledge, end-of-life (EOL) care outcomes among adolescents and young adults (AYAs) with cancer who are living in poverty remain poorly understood. The primary aim of the current study was to examine the effect of poverty on EOL care for AYA patients with cancer.
Methods: The authors conducted a multisite, retrospective study of AYA patients with cancer aged 15 to 39 years who died between January 2013 and December 2016 at 3 academic sites. Medical record-based EOL care outcomes included hospice referral, palliative care (PC) consultation, cancer treatment within the last month of life, and location of death. Two measures of poverty were applied: 1) zip code with a median income =200% of the federal poverty level; and 2) public insurance or lack of insurance. Logistic regression analyses were conducted.
Results: A total of 252 AYA cancer decedents were identified. Approximately 41% lived in a high-poverty zip code and 48% had public insurance or lacked insurance; approximately 70% had at least 1 poverty indicator. Nearly 40% had a hospice referral, 60% had a PC consultation (76% on an inpatient basis), 38% received EOL cancer treatment, and 39% died in the hospital. In bivariable analyses, AYA patients living in low-income zip codes were found to be less likely to enroll in hospice (P = .01), have an early PC referral (P = .01), or receive EOL cancer treatment (P = .03), although only EOL cancer treatment met statistical significance in multivariable models. No differences with regard to location of death (P = .99) were observed.
Conclusions: AYA patients with cancer experience low rates of hospice referral and high rates of in-hospital death regardless of socioeconomic status. Future studies should evaluate early inpatient PC referrals as a possible method for improving EOL care.
Background: The “Promoting Resilience in Stress Management” intervention is a skills-based, early palliative care intervention with demonstrated efficacy in adolescents and young adults with cancer.
Aim: Utilizing data from a randomized clinical trial of Promoting Resilience in Stress Management versus Usual Care, we examined whether response to Promoting Resilience in Stress Management differed across key sociodemographic characteristics.
Design: Adolescents and young adults with cancer completed patient-reported outcome measures of resilience, hope, benefit-finding, quality of life, and distress at enrollment and 6 months. Participants were stratified by sex, age, race, and neighborhood socioeconomic disadvantage based on home address (Area Deprivation Index scores with 8–10 = most disadvantaged). Differences in the magnitude of effect sizes between stratification subgroups were noted using a conservative cutoff of d > 0.5.
Setting/participants: participants were 12 to 25 years old, English-speaking, and receiving cancer care at Seattle Children’s Hospital.
Results: In total, 92 adolescents and young adults (48 Promoting Resilience in Stress Management, 44 Usual Care) completed baseline measures. They were 43% female, 73% 12 to 17 years old, 64% White, and 24% most disadvantaged. Effect sizes stratified by sex, age, and race were in an expected positive direction and of similar magnitude for the majority of outcomes with some exceptions in magnitude of treatment effect. Those who lived in less disadvantaged neighborhoods benefited more from Promoting Resilience in Stress Management, and those living in most disadvantaged neighborhoods benefited less.
Conclusion: The “Promoting Resilience in Stress Management” intervention demonstrated a positive effect for the majority of outcomes regardless of sex, age, and race. It may not be as helpful for adolescents and young adults living in disadvantaged neighborhoods. Future studies must confirm its generalizability and integrate opportunities for improvement by targeting individual needs.
BACKGROUND: Adolescent and young adult advance care planning is beneficial in improving communication between patients, surrogates, and clinicians. The influences on treatment decisions among adolescents and young adults are underexplored in the literature.
AIM: The aim of this study was to explore and better understand the influences on decision-making for adolescent and young adult bone marrow transplant patients about future medical care.
DESIGN: Clinical case studies and qualitative inductive content analysis of treatment decisions made during the Respecting Choices® Next Steps Pediatric Advance Care Planning conversation as a component of the Family-Centered Advance Care Planning Intervention.
SETTINGS/PARTICIPANTS: A total of 10 adolescent and young adult patients (aged 14–27 years) undergoing bone marrow transplant at an academic Midwest children’s hospital were involved in the study.
CONCLUSION: This study highlights that adolescent and young adult bone marrow transplant patients are capable of meaningful deliberation about future treatment decisions. Influences on decision-making should be incorporated into advance care planning conversations to facilitate communication between patients and their surrogates. Longitudinal research is needed to explore these influences throughout the trajectory of illness.
A growing evidence base highlights the negative impact of poor psychosocial care at end-of-life. Adolescents and young adults (AYAs) 15-39 years of age with cancer face unique medical and psychosocial challenges that make them especially vulnerable when treatment is not successful. Although the importance of age-appropriate medical and psychosocial care is internationally recognized for AYAs across the cancer trajectory, there is little guidance on best-practice care and communication practices with AYAs as they approach the end-of-life. We conducted a narrative review and found evidence points to the potential benefits of introducing palliative care teams early in the care trajectory. Research undertaken to date emphasizes the importance of exploring AYAs' preferences around end-of-life issues in a repeated, consistent manner, and highlighted that AYAs may have strong preferences on a range of issues such as being able to stay in their own home, being comfortable and free from pain, and expressing their wishes to loved ones. We highlight a number of best-practice recommendations to guide clinicians around the critical elements of when, who, what, and how end-of-life conversations may be best facilitated with AYAs. Gaps in the evidence base remain, including research focusing on better understanding barriers and facilitators to timely, age-appropriate end-of-life communication for AYAs with different diagnoses, where discordance between AYA-parent preferences exists, and when AYAs die at home versus in hospital. We have proposed a new model to support clinicians and researchers to better conceptualize how interacting individual, familial, and sociocultural factors impact end-of-life communication with AYAs in clinical settings.
BACKGROUND: Adolescents and young adults undergoing heart transplantation experience risks of morbidity and mortality both pre- and post-transplant. To improve end-of-life care for this population, it is necessary to understand their medical and end-of-life decision-making preferences.
AIM: (1) To examine adolescent/young adult decision-making involvement specific to heart transplant listing, and (2) to characterize their preferences specific to medical and end-of-life decision making.
DESIGN: This cross-sectional research study utilized survey methods. Data were collected from October 2016 to March 2018.
SETTING/PARTICIPANTS: Twelve adolescent and young adult patients listed for heart transplant (ages = 12-19 years) and one parent for each were enrolled at a single-center, US children's hospital.
RESULTS: Consistent with their preferences, the majority of adolescent/young adult participants (82%) perceived a high level of involvement in the decision to be listed for transplant. Patient involvement in this decision was primarily by way of seeking advice or information from their parents and being asked to express their opinion from parents. Despite a preference among patients to discuss their prognosis and be involved in end-of-life decision making if seriously ill, only 42% of patients had discussed their end-of-life wishes with anyone. Few parents recounted having such discussions. Preferences regarding the timing and nature of end-of-life decision-making discussions varied.
CONCLUSIONS: Although young people are involved in the decision to pursue heart transplantation, little attention is paid to involving them in discussions regarding end-of-life decision making in a manner that is consistent with individual preferences.
Background: Motor neurone disease is a progressive neurodegenerative disease without cure. Little is known about how young people are affected when a family member has the illness and subsequently dies, resulting in a gap in understanding of how best to support them. One psychotherapeutic approach involves creating a legacy to pass onto the young person, but little research has investigated the use of an emerging format, digital legacies, where videos document a person’s life, memories and achievements.
Aim: To investigate the views, perceptions and experiences of digital legacies with people affected by motor neurone disease.
Design: A qualitative study underpinned by interpretative phenomenological analysis.
Setting/participants: People living with motor neurone disease (n = 4) and bereaved young people (n = 3) in the United Kingdom. Open-ended interviews were conducted in person. Ethical approval was granted by a University ethics committee.
Results: Five key themes emerged exemplifying mutual challenges and benefits for people with motor neurone disease and bereaved young people. Creating a digital legacy provides a sense of purpose for people with motor neurone disease and a way to convey personality and life experiences. Bereaved young people can modify disease-related memories of the person and gain comfort from hearing and seeing videos.
Conclusion: This study expands the existing continuing bonds model of grief to include an ‘autobiographical chapter’, creating ‘The Model of Reciprocal Bonds Formation’.
OBJECTIVES: To assess the availability and efficacy of interventions open to adolescents and young adults (AYAs; 15-25 years) bereaved by a parent's or sibling's cancer.
METHODS: A systematic review of peer-reviewed literature on interventions available to AYAs bereaved by a parent's or sibling's cancer was conducted through searches of six online databases (PsycINFO, Medline, Scopus, Embase, SWAB and Web of Science Core Collection).
RESULTS: Database and reference searches yielded 2985 articles, 40 of which were included in the review. Twenty-two interventions were identified that were available for bereaved young people. However, only three were specific to young people bereaved by familial cancer, and none were specific to AYAs. Interventions primarily provided opportunities for participants to have fun, share their experiences and/or memorialise the deceased; psychoeducation about bereavement, grief and coping was less common. Only six interventions had been satisfactorily evaluated, and no intervention targeted or analysed data for AYAs separately. Overall, some evidence suggested that interventions (especially those that were theoretically grounded) had positive effects for bereaved young people. However, benefits were inconsistently evidenced in participants' self-reports and often only applied to subgroups of participants (eg, older youths and those with better psychological well-being at baseline).
CONCLUSIONS: Considering the very limited number of interventions specific to bereavement by familial cancer and the lack of interventions targeting AYAs specifically, it is unclear whether currently available interventions would benefit this population. The population of AYAs bereaved by familial cancer is clearly under-serviced; further development and evaluation of interventions is needed.
Chaque année, en France, 1200 Adolescents et Jeunes adultes
(AJA) entre 15 et 25 ans sont diagnostiqués pour un cancer. Ses
formes les plus fréquentes sont les lymphomes, les sarcomes, les
tumeurs germinales, les leucémies aiguës et les tumeurs du
système nerveux central.
Dans cette classe d'âge, de nombreuses études ont mis en corrélation le risque plus élevé de mauvaise observance des traitements
associés à celui de rechute de la maladie.
En plus des problématiques adolescentes, ils sont à la fois confrontés
à une maladie grave avec risque vital, et à des traitements
prolongés sur plusieurs mois qui vont interférer avec leurs projets
d’études, de travail et leurs relations familiales et sociales. L’adolescent ou le jeune adulte à qui l’on annonce un diagnostic de cancer va connaître, en plus des transformations corporelles liées à la maladie et aux traitements, nombre de bouleversements sur les liens familiaux, amicaux et amoureux, sur la scolarité et la ormation professionnelle, la recherche d'un premier emploi…
La création d’unités ou d’équipes multidisciplinaires AJA avec un
personnel spécifiquement formé, permet de créer un cadre favorable
à une observance thérapeutique adaptée, et un accompagnement médical et humain au plus près des besoins des patients, tout en soutenant leurs projets de vie.
Nous proposons, par cet article, de présenter la prise en charge AJA en oncologie, et plus spécifiquement celle de l’Institut Curie.
This cross-sectional survey compares the risk of mental health problems like poor well-being, complicated and prolonged grief, and mental disorders between young adults experiencing a divorced or non-divorced parent’s death. 190 participants were recruited from Facebook via the Danish National Center for Grief. Well-being was measured using WHO-5, prolonged grief using PG-13 and complicated grief using BGQ, and common mental disorders using CMDQ. Findings confirmed deleterious effects on mental health in young adults experiencing parental death, but higher risk, when losing a divorced parent compared to a non-divorced parent, was associated to prolonged grief, complicated grief, bodily distress syndrome, and alcohol misuse.
Few studies have investigated palliative and end-of-life care processes among young adults (YAs), aged 18-34 years, who died of cancer. This retrospective study used a natural language processing algorithm to identify documentation and timing of four process measures in YA cancer decedents' medical records: palliative care involvement, discussions of goals of care, code status, and hospice. Among 2878 YAs, 138 had a recorded date of death. In this group, 54.3% had at least one process measure documented early (31-180 days before death), 18.0% had only late documentation of process measures (0-30 days), and 27.5% had none documented.
Le thème de la mort chez les jeunes est l’objet de nombreuses recherches de toutes les disciplines des sciences humaines et sociales. En premier lieu, relevons l’analyse des dimensions touchant le suicide dans cette population. L’étude des représentations sociales entourant le suicide met ainsi en évidence des dimensions socioculturelles pour expliquer sa signification, les facteurs de prévalence, les croyances qui le sous-tendent et leurs liens avec la dimension religieuse (Mereus, 2006). Les données sur les idéations suicidaires et les conduites suicidaires issues de recherches dans plusieurs contextes nationaux démontrent la variabilité des prévalences, des stratégies et des déterminants identitaires, psychologiques et socio-économiques (Peyre et al., 2014; Caron et Robitaille, 2007; Volant, 2006; Belloc, Leichsenring et Chabrol, 2004) et mettent en évidence des enjeux éthiques (Corriveau et al., 2016) tout en soulignant l’importance des campagnes de prévention et des suivis psychologiques.
OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to investigate levels of perceived family cohesion during childhood, teenage years, and young adulthood in cancer-bereaved youths compared with non-bereaved peers.
METHODS: In this nationwide, population-based study, 622 (73%) young adults (aged 18-26) who had lost a parent to cancer 6 to 9 years previously, when they were teenagers (aged 13-16), and 330 (78%) non-bereaved peers from a matched random sample answered a study-specific questionnaire. Associations were assessed using multivariable logistic regression.
RESULTS: Compared with non-bereaved youths, the cancer-bereaved participants were more likely to report poor family cohesion during teenage years (odds ratio [OR] 1.6, 95% CI, 1.0-2.4, and 2.3, 95% CI, 1.5-3.5, for paternally and maternally bereaved youths, respectively). This was also seen in young adulthood among maternally bereaved participants (OR 2.5; 95% CI, 1.6-4.1), while there was no difference between paternally bereaved and non-bereaved youths. After controlling for a number of covariates (eg, year of birth, number of siblings, and depression), the adjusted ORs for poor family cohesion remained statistically significant. In a further analysis stratified for gender, this difference in perceived poor family cohesion was only noted in females.
CONCLUSION: Teenage loss of a parent to cancer was associated with perceived poor family cohesion during teenage years. This was also noted in young adulthood among the maternally bereaved. Females were more likely to report poor family cohesion. Our results indicate a need for increased awareness of family cohesion in bereaved-to-be families with teenage offspring, with special attention to gender roles.
Purpose: Adolescents and young adults (AYAs) with terminal cancer are a marginalized population with unique medical and psychosocial needs. AYAs commonly report challenges with their health care experiences, however, little is known about the experiences of the health care providers (HCPs) who deliver this specialized care. The purpose of the current study was to understand HCPs' experiences caring for AYAs with terminal cancer.
Methods:Nine HCPs (four nurses and five physicians) took part in in-depth semistructured interviews. Participants were eligible if they were a nurse or physician in Atlantic Canada; cared for at least one AYA patient with terminal cancer in the past 3 years; and were able to speak and understand English. Data were analyzed using interpretive phenomenological analysis.
Results: Analyses revealed four superordinate themes present in the data: (1) many unknowns and uncertainties associated with providing care for AYAs compounded by minimal or no training specifically concerning this population; (2) an intense emotional experience compared with caring for patients with terminal cancer of other ages; (3) personal identification with patients and their families; and (4) attempts to make sense of the circumstance thwarted by feelings of injustice and unfairness.
Conclusions: HCPs experienced unique emotional and logistical challenges when caring for AYAs with terminal cancer, which can influence the care they provide. HCPs' experiences highlight the need for training to support clinicians in caring for AYAs with terminal cancer to optimize their own well-being and delivery of health care services to this population.