Managing an altered social context—Patients experiences of staying away from home while undergoing proton beam therapy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Aim: To illuminate the experience of an altered social context for patients with primary brain tumours living away from home while undergoing proton beam therapy. Design: A descriptive, qualitative cross-sectional interview study. Methods: Nineteen patients were interviewed between December 2015–August 2016, either during (N = 7) or before and after (N = 12) their proton beam therapy. A hermeneutical analysis was performed. Results: Participants made adjustments to achieve control and well-being during the treatment period. The analysis also revealed two interrelated patterns that helped participants adjust: being part of the family from a distance and seeking affinity. Conclusion: It is important that patients receiving treatment far from home find a way to remain a part of their family and find affinity in the altered social context. Health professionals can prepare patients for the treatment period and can implement interventions to promote well-being for both patients and their relatives.


  • Marie Louise Möllerberg
  • Ulrica Langegård
  • Emma Ohlsson-Nevo
  • Per Fransson
  • Birgitta Johansson
  • Karin Ahlberg
  • Katarina Sjövall
External organisations
  • Sahlgrenska Academy
  • Örebro University
  • Umeå University
  • Norrland University Hospital
  • Uppsala University Hospital
  • Skåne University Hospital
  • Research Institutes of Sweden (RISE)
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Nursing


  • brain tumour, interviews, nursing, proton beam therapy, psychological adaptation, qualitative method, radiotherapy, social context, social support, staying away from home
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1157-1163
Number of pages7
JournalNursing Open
Issue number4
Early online date2020 Apr 14
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Jul
Publication categoryResearch