Background Cancer is a leading cause of death in Thailand. Thai cancer patients often seek medical treatment while in advanced stages of the disease. Despite a recent increase in this attention given to improve end of life care in Thailand, little research has been undertaken to describe the experiences of those who live at the end of life.
Aims The aim of this longitudinal ethnographic case study was to explore the experiences of living toward end of life in patients with advanced cancer.
Methods Series interviews and participant observation were conducted on 15 patients with terminal advanced cancer and 20 family caregivers. The inductive qualitative analysis was applied.
Results The stories of these informants with advanced and terminal cancer reflected the experiences of living with suffering and moving beyond suffering. Sufferings experienced by informants included suffering related to the ill body and suffering related to care. Adopting religious doctrine, being hopeful, and being surrounded by love and care from family helps the informants move beyond and transcend the sufferings.
Conclusion The result of this study will be useful for healthcare providers to develop end of life care program in order to improve quality of life of the terminal cancer patients and to promote peaceful death at home.
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