Deathbed visions from the Republic of Moldova: A content analysis of family observations.

Allan Kellehear*, Vadim Pogonet, Rodica Mindruta-Stratan , Victor Gorelco

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This is an interview-based study of 102 families and their observations of the last weeks and days of a dying family member. Forty-one families reported hearing about “visions,” “hallucinations,” or “dreams” from their dying loved one before their death. Of these 41 mixed cases, 37 cases demonstrated classic features of deathbed visions—reports of seeing dead relatives or friends communicating to the dying person. This article reports a content analysis of these 37 cases in order to identify the major psychosocial themes that seem to be conveyed by these kinds of experiences. Six major themes are identified. These themes are: support, comfort, companionship, reunion, prognosis, and choice and control. Implications of these themes are discussed in relation to their role in providing significant support for the psychological morale and social well being of dying people.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)303-317
Number of pages15
JournalOmega: Journal of Death and Dying
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2012
Externally publishedYes

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