Advanced SearchSearch Tips
How do Lung Cancer Patients Experience Stigma?: A Meta-synthesis of Qualitative Studies
facebook(new window)  Pirnt(new window) E-mail(new window) Excel Download
  • Journal title : Korean Journal of Adult Nursing
  • Volume 28, Issue 1,  2016, pp.116-126
  • Publisher : Korean Society of Adult Nursing
  • DOI : 10.7475/kjan.2016.28.1.116
 Title & Authors
How do Lung Cancer Patients Experience Stigma?: A Meta-synthesis of Qualitative Studies
Jeong, Ji Yeon; Jeong, Gyeonghui; So, Hyang Sook;
  PDF(new window)
Purpose: Lung cancer patients are often stigmatized since lung cancer is closely associated with smoking, which is a self-administered life style. The stigma of lung cancer has been examined in some qualitative studies; however, their findings were diverse and not yet synthesized. Therefore, this meta-synthesis study aimed to explore how lung cancer patients experience stigma. Methods: A meta-synthesis method, as suggested by Sandelowski and Barroso in 2007, was applied by aggregating the findings after an evaluation according to consolidated criteria for reporting qualitative research (COREQ). Results: By synthesizing the findings of the selected seven papers, a synthesized theme was emerged as "experiencing external and internal distances, which mandates authentic and consistent supports." The four sub-themes included 'experiencing some distance from the surrounded world,' 'experiencing self-made distance between the disease and oneself,' 'the disease experience causes social isolation and loneliness,' and 'there is lack of supportive care for myself.' Conclusion: Health care providers should be more attentive to supporting lung cancer patients by providing more effective advocacy programs that improve patients' quality of life.
Lung cancer;Stigma;Qualitative study;Meta-synthesis;
 Cited by
Korea Central Cancer Registry. National cancer statistics in 2014. Goyang-si, Gyeonggi-do: National Cancer Information Center; 2014 [cited 2015 September 25]. Available from:

Chatwin J, Sanders C. The influence of social factors on helpseeking for people with lung cancer. European Journal of Cancer Care. 2013;22(6):709-13. crossref(new window)

Schag C, Ganz P, Wing D, Sim MS, Lee J. Quality of life in adult survivors of lung, colon and prostate cancer. Quality of Life Research. 1994;3(2):127-41. crossref(new window)

Sikorskii A, Given CW, Given B, Jeon S, Decker V, Decker D, et al. Symptom management for cancer patients: a trial comparing two multimodal interventions. Journal of Pain and Symptom Management. 2007;34(3):253-64. crossref(new window)

Sarna L, Evangelista L, Tashkin D, Padilla G, Holmes C, Brecht ML, et al. Impact of respiratory symptoms and pulmonary function on quality of life of long-term survivors of non-small cell lung cancer. Chest. 2004;125(2):439-45. crossref(new window)

Zabora J, BrintzenhofeSzoc K, Curbow B, Hooker C, Piantadosi S. The prevalence of psychological distress by cancer site. Psycho-Oncology. 2001;10(1):19-28. crossref(new window)

Hill KM, Amir Z, Muers MF, Connolly CK, Round CE. Do newly diagnosed lung cancer patients feel their concerns are being met? European Journal of Cancer Care. 2003;12(1):35-45. crossref(new window)

American Cancer Society. Cancer Facts & Figures 2012. Atlanta GA: American Cancer Society; 2012 [cited 2015 December 18]. Available from:

Goffman E. Stigma: notes on the management of spoiled identity. Cliffs E, editor. New Jersey: Prentice Hall; 1963.

LoConte NK, Else-Quest NM, Eickhoff J, Hyde J, Schiller JH. Assessment of guilt and shame in patients with non-small-cell lung cancer compared with patients with breast and prostate cancer. Clinical lung cancer. 2008;9(3):171-8. crossref(new window)

Gonzalez BD, Jacobsen PB. Depression in lung cancer patients: the role of perceived stigma. Psycho-Oncology. 2012;21 (3):239-46. crossref(new window)

Conlon A, Gilbert D, Jones B, Aldredge P. Stacked stigma: oncology social workers' perceptions of the lung cancer experience. Journal of Psychosocial Oncology. 2010;28(1):98-115. crossref(new window)

Lee JL, Kim KS. The Relationships between stigma, distress, and quality of life in patients with lung cancer. Asian Oncology Nursing. 2011;11(3):237-46. crossref(new window)

Byun HS, Kim EK, Kim GD. Impacts of stigma and distress on the quality of Life in patients with lung cancer. Journal of safety and crisis management. 2015;11(8):223-40.

Cho J, Smith K, Choi EK, Kim IR, Chang YJ, Park HY, et al. Public attitudes toward cancer and cancer patients: a national survey in Korea. Psycho-Oncology. 2013;22(3):605-13. crossref(new window)

Kim MA, Yi J. Life after cancer: How does public stigma increase psychological distress of childhood cancer survivors? International journal of nursing studies. 2014;51(12):1605-14. crossref(new window)

Bowling A. Research methods in health: investigating health and health services: McGraw-Hill Education (UK); 2014.

Jensen LA, Allen MN. Meta-synthesis of qualitative findings. Qualitative Health Research. 1996;6(4):553-60. crossref(new window)

Sandelowski M, Barroso J. Handbook for synthesizing qualitative research. Springer Publishing Company; 2007.

Finfgeld DL. Metasynthesis: the state of the art-so far. Qualitative Health Research. 2003;13(7):893-904. crossref(new window)

Sandelowski M, Voils CI, Barroso J. Comparability work and the management of difference in research synthesis studies. Social Science & Medicine. 2007;64(1):236-47. crossref(new window)

Tong A, Sainsbury P, Craig J. Consolidated criteria for reporting qualitative research (COREQ): a 32-item checklist for interviews and focus groups. International Journal for Quality in Health Care. 2007;19(6):349-57. crossref(new window)

Joanna Briggs Institute. Joanna Briggs Institute reviewers' manual 2014: methodology for JBI umbrella reviews. Australia: Joanna Briggs Institute; 2014 [cited 2015 December 23]. Available from:

LeBel TP. Perceptions of and responses to stigma. Sociology Compass. 2008;2(2):409-32. crossref(new window)

Corrigan PW, Watson AC. The paradox of self-stigma and mental illness. Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice. 2002; 9(1):35-53. crossref(new window)

Corrigan PW. The impact of stigma on severe mental illness. Cognitive and Behavioral Practice. 1999;5(2):201-22. crossref(new window)

British Columbia Ministry of Health. Social isolation of seniors: an emerging issues. Children's, Women's and Seniors Health Branch. Canada: Ministry of Health; 2004 [cited 2015 December 22]. Available from:

Weiss J, Stephenson BJ, Edwards LJ, Rigney M, Copeland A. Public attitudes about lung cancer: stigma, support, and predictors of support. Journal of Multidisciplinary Healthcare. 2014;7:293-300. crossref(new window)

Suh EE. The impact of cancer diagnosis and its treatment on Korean women's lives: a meta-synthesis study. Korean Journal of Adult Nursing. 2015;27(1):117-26. crossref(new window)

Krefting L. Rigor in qualitative research: the assessment of trustworthiness. American Journal of Occupational Therapy. 1991;45(3):214-22. crossref(new window)