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Nursing Research and Practice
Volume 2013, Article ID 794698, 10 pages
Research Article

Waiting Narratives of Lung Transplant Candidates

1School of Nursing, Edgewood College, 1000 Edgewood, College Drive, Madison, WI 53711-1997, USA
2College of Nursing, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, P.O. Box 413, Milwaukee, WI 53201-0413, USA
3School of Nursing, University of Wisconsin-Madison, F6/1866 CSC, 600 Highland Ave, Madison, WI 53792-2455, USA

Received 26 October 2012; Accepted 5 January 2013

Academic Editor: Amanda Bingley

Copyright © 2013 Maria T. Yelle et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Before 2005, time accrued on the lung transplant waiting list counted towards who was next in line for a donor lung. Then in 2005 the lung allocation scoring system was implemented, which meant the higher the illness severity scores, the higher the priority on the transplant list. Little is known of the lung transplant candidates who were listed before 2005 and were caught in the transition when the lung allocation scoring system was implemented. A narrative analysis was conducted to explore the illness narratives of seven lung transplant candidates between 2006 and 2007. Arthur Kleinman’s concept of illness narratives was used as a conceptual framework for this study to give voice to the illness narratives of lung transplant candidates. Results of this study illustrate that lung transplant candidates expressed a need to tell their personal story of waiting and to be heard. Recommendation from this study calls for healthcare providers to create the time to enable illness narratives of the suffering of waiting to be told. Narrative skills of listening to stories of emotional suffering would enhance how healthcare providers could attend to patients’ stories and hear what is most meaningful in their lives.