Experience of Life-sustaining Treatment in Patient Care among Intensive Care Unit Nurses: Phenomenological Approach

중환자실 간호사의 연명치료환자 간호 경험: 현상학적 접근

  • Received : 2016.03.10
  • Accepted : 2016.05.25
  • Published : 2016.05.31


Purpose: The purpose of this study was to explore the subjective experience of life-sustaining treatment care among nurses in intensive care units. Method: A phenomenology was used for the study. Data were collected from October to December, 2015 using open-ended questions during in-depth interviews. Participants were nurses working in intensive care units and were contacted through purposive techniques. Eight nurses participated in this study. Results: Four categories emerged from the analysis using Colaizzi's method: (a) difficulties due to life-sustaining treatment care, (b) dilemma of extension or cessation of life-sustaining treatment, (c) repressed feelings and emotional exhaustion, and (d) forming values for life-sustaining treatment from nursing experience. Conclusion: Provision of clearer guidelines on life-sustaining treatment which reflect a family-oriented culture is important for nurses in ICU and will promote nurses involvement in the decision-making process of life-sustaining treatment of patients.


Intensive care units;Terminal care;Nursing


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