Skip to main content

Research Repository

Advanced Search

Life Interrupted: Experiences of adolescents, young adults and their family living with malignant melanoma

McInally, Wendy; Gray?Brunton, Carol; Chouliara, Zoe; Kyle, Richard G.


Wendy McInally

Zoe Chouliara

Richard G. Kyle


Melanoma is one of the most common human malignancies; yet, it is often thought of as a disease of adulthood rather than one affecting adolescents and young adults. This study sought to understand the experiences of adolescents, young adults and their family living with malignant melanoma.

A qualitative study using Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis, through a multi-perspective design.

Data collection was conducted between January and August 2018 in each participant's Primary Care Centre when they were attending for an outpatient appointment. Each young person and a nominated family member were interviewed (n = 10) either individually (n = 4) or as a dyad (n = 6) according to their personal choice. In-depth semi-structured interviews were conducted and audio-recorded with the participant's consent. Interview data were transcribed verbatim and analysed.

The metanarrative ‘Life Interrupted’ was the core conceptual thread woven throughout the findings. It represents the interconnections and interrelationships between the adolescent or young adult and their family. Being able to recognize the disease and seek support was challenging with often limited physical, emotional or social support resulting in feelings of fear and isolation. Four super-ordinate themes were identified: (a) ‘Is it Serious’, (b) ‘Too Much too Young’, (c) ‘Not the Same’ and (d) ‘Time to Live’.

With the rising incidence of MM in the adolescents and young adults population globally, there are demands to improve healthcare professionals and nurse's knowledge and understanding of MM. As young people with MM experience their journey outside specialist cancer services, the care delivery for this patient group and their families require stronger links between services.

This study will inform the improvement of care delivery for MM in order that this patient group is provided with the same access to service delivery as other adolescents and young adults with cancer.


McInally, W., Gray‐Brunton, C., Chouliara, Z., & Kyle, R. G. (2021). Life Interrupted: Experiences of adolescents, young adults and their family living with malignant melanoma. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 77(9), 3867-3879.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jun 15, 2021
Online Publication Date Jul 10, 2021
Publication Date 2021-09
Deposit Date Jul 22, 2021
Publicly Available Date Jul 22, 2021
Journal Journal of Advanced Nursing
Print ISSN 0309-2402
Electronic ISSN 1365-2648
Publisher Wiley
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 77
Issue 9
Pages 3867-3879
Keywords adolescents, experiences, family, interpretative phenomenological analysis, malignant melanoma, narrative, nursing, qualitative, research, young adults
Public URL


Life Interrupted: Experiences Of Adolescents, Young Adults And Their Family Living With Malignant Melanoma (726 Kb)

Publisher Licence URL

Copyright Statement
This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

You might also like

Downloadable Citations