A Comparison of Death Anxiety and Quality of Life of Patients With Advanced Cancer or AIDS and Their Family Caregivers Article

cited authors

  • Sherman, DW; Norman, R; McSherry, CB

fiu authors


  • As an existential crisis, death anxiety may create suffering and impact quality of life. Based on a sample of 101 patients (63 patients with AIDS and 38 with advanced cancer) and 79 family caregivers (43 AIDS patients' caregivers and 36 cancer patients' caregivers), this study examined the death anxiety of patients with advanced cancer and patients with AIDS and that of their family caregivers and the relationship of death anxiety and quality of life. The results indicated that AIDS patients expressed greater death anxiety than cancer patients, but death anxiety was not different among family caregivers. Both AIDS and cancer patients experienced greater death anxiety than their caregivers. Greater death anxiety was associated with lower quality of life, particularly in the psychological domain for AIDS patients. There were significant correlations between the death anxiety subscales and the quality of life subscales for family caregivers, especially for AIDS caregivers. Interventions that lessen death anxiety may enhance quality of life as death approaches, particularly for AIDS patients and their family caregivers. © 2010.

publication date

  • March 1, 2010

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

start page

  • 99

end page

  • 112


  • 21


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