PURPOSE: The purpose of the present study was to explore the meaning of quality of life in patients with chronic cardiovascular disease. METHODS: A grounded theory method guided data collection and analysis. A total of 16 adult outpatients with chronic cardiovascular disease was participated. Data were collected through individual in-depth interviews. All interviews were audio taped and transcribed verbatim. Coding was used to establish different concepts and categories. A theoretical sampling technique was used to obtain diverse data from many relevant categories. RESULTS: Seven categories were extracted, and they divided into constructing and intervening factors of quality of life. Constructing factors were uncertainty, recovery in the sense of control and maintaining social life. Intervening factors were symptom experiences, social support, taking care of themselves, and reflecting life. 'Keeping restrictive conditions under control' was emerged as a core category. The meaning of quality of life in patients with cardiovascular was explained according to the levels of keeping restrictive conditions under control. CONCLUSION: The result of this study may contribute for health professionals to understand the quality of life in patients with cardiovascular disease.