Problem Identification: To identify patterns of response of parents in relation to taking care of their child with cancer.
Literature Search: The search was performed using CINAHL® and Scopus in February 2013.
Data Evaluation: The selection process resulted in 18 articles with a wide range of methodologic approaches. The description of the research methods of each study and the relevance of the results in comparison to the purpose of this review were established as assessment criteria.
Synthesis: The results of the studies were analyzed using Meleis’s Transition Theory, identifying a vast number of patterns of response developed by the parents. These patterns of response were analyzed, compared, and split into four themes.
Conclusions: Using this methodology, a wide range of behaviors, attitudes, and competencies associated with the circumstance of parents caring for a child with cancer could be identified.
Implications for Practice: Knowledge of the patterns of response will enable nurses to lead parents through a healthy transition process in caring for their children with cancer.