Document Type : Original Article



BACKGROUND: Diagnosing cancer, as a life‑threatening event, in children and adolescents stops
the normal course of life for all family members. Spirituality, which plays an essential role in coping
with illness and death, can increase resistance against psychological crises induced by cancer
diagnosis and treatment. This study aims to discover the spiritual needs of mothers having children
with cancer aged 1–12 years old.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: In this qualitative study, the conventional content analysis approach
was used. The research environment was three pediatric oncology wards of Amir Hospital in Shiraz,
Iran. Data were collected from September 2019 to March 2020 through face‑to‑face semi‑structured
in‑depth interviews. Fifteen participants including 12 mothers and 3 nurses were interviewed through
purposive method considering maximal variation. The interviews were recorded, transcribed, and
subjected to a qualitative analysis. Credibility, dependability, confirmability, and transferability of
data were confirmed.
RESULTS: The mean (± standard deviation) age of the mothers was 35.76 (±5.96) years old. The
spiritual needs of the mothers were classified into three categories, including religious well‑being,
existential well‑being, and growth and excellence as well as seven subcategories. Religious well‑being
included subcategories of direct and indirect connection with God, existential well‑being included
subcategories of need for hope, multifaceted support, and rethinking, growth, and excellence consisted
of subcategories of devoting yourself and surrender.
CONCLUSION: Mothers of children with cancer face important spiritual needs. Therefore, it is
necessary for the treatment team to identify these needs and use them to provide appropriate
spiritual care.


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