End of Life Dreams and Visions (ELDV)

I stumbled upon this recently published study into End of Life Dreams & Visions.


I've only briefly skimmed through it, but noticed a few nuggets of information. For example...

"...patients’ pre-death dreams were frequently so intense that the dream carried into wakefulness and the dying often experienced them as waking reality. The realism of pre-death dreams/visions is consistent with prior research suggesting that during stages of transition or crisis, dreams become more vivid, intense, and memorable..."
Patients rated the degree of comfort/distress associated with their ELDVs on a 5-point scale ranging from Extremely
Comforting (5) to Extremely Distressing (1).

18.8% of dreams/visions were rated as distressing or extremely distressing.

The second paper goes into a little more detail about these distressing dreams/visions...

Some of these replayed traumatic life experiences. One patient reported dreaming of his previous war experience. A second patient reported dreaming of her son’s serious injury that occurred on a naval ship. Several patients had dreams about abusive childhood experiences.

Other distressing dreams were reminiscent of difficult situations or relationships. One male patient reported having distressing dreams of his brother being very critical of him and also reported distressing, anxiety-provoking dreams about his work, both of which he reported were based on actual past experiences. Another patient had a distressing dream in which his coworkers were trying to kidnap him. Others were described as reminiscent of negative past experiences with friends or family members, which were perceived as distressing.

Other distressing dreams were categorized as 'Unfinished Business'. Some reported dreams that centered on their fears of no longer being able to do the things they felt they needed to accomplish in life. One young mother had
distressing dreams of her daily responsibilities with her children, these involved getting her children ready for school, getting them to practices, and other parental responsibilities. Another young mother experienced distressing dreams related to real-life worries about her bills and her children. A 58-year-old woman had dreams about her living family
members and reported distress over whether her daughter would get her cell phone.

The earlier paper reports that almost half of the dreams/visions (45.3%) occurred while asleep, 15.7% occurred while awake, and 39.1% occurred while both asleep and awake. I would have liked to have seen a clear distinction made by the authors between reports that came from 'dreams', vs reports that came from 'waking visions'. The examples of distressing experiences given above all seem to be 'dreams', which makes me wonder whether any distressing experiences were reported by patients as visions? If not, it might suggest that there is some difference between 'dreams' and 'visions'.