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Indian J Palliat Care. 2019 Jan-Mar;25(1):9-17. doi: 10.4103/IJPC.IJPC_117_18.

Communication, the Key in Creating Dignified Encounters in Unexpected Sudden Death - With Stroke as Example.

Author information

Department of Medicine, Stroke Unit, Skaraborg Hospital Skövde, Skövde, Sweden.
Department of Health Sciences, University West, Trollhättan, Sweden.
Institute of Health and Care Sciences, The Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden.



The aim of this study was to illuminate the communication and its meaning in unexpected sudden death with stroke as example, as experienced by stroke team members and next of kin.

Subject and Methods:

The study has a qualitative design. Secondary analysis of data from four previous interview studies with stroke team members; physicians, registered nurses, and enrolled nurses from the stroke units (SU) and next of kin of patients who had died due to acute stroke during hospital stay were utilized.


Communication is revealed as the foundation for care and caring with the overarching theme foundation for dignified encounters in care built-up by six themes illuminating the meaning of communication in unexpected sudden death by stroke.


Communication shown as the foundation for dignified encounters in care as experienced by stroke team members and next of kin enables the patient to come forth as a unique person and uphold absolute dignity in care. Acknowledging the next of kin's familiarity with the severely ill patient will contribute to personalizing the patient and in this way be the ground for a person centeredness in care despite the patients' inability to defend their own interests. Through knowledge about the patient as a person, the foundation for dignified care is given, expressed through respect for the patient's will and desires and derived through conversations between carers and next of kin.


Communication; next of kin; person-centered care; stroke team members; supplementary secondary analysis

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