PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to explore the experiences of people with chronic hepatitis B (CHB) in Korea. The specific aim was to identify major problems that people with CHB face and strategies that they are dealing with. METHODS: A grounded theory method was utilized. The data were collected by individual in-depth interviews from 12 CHB patients from one of the major hospitals in Korea. RESULTS: After constant comparative analysis, a core category emerged as "illness management with self-reliance and will." Seven major strategies that were identified in dealing with the illness were maintaining receptive and positive attitudes; restraining excessive work and greed; searching for information; controlling illness information; adhering to practices for not spreading the viral disease; abstaining from alcohol and smoking and maintaining healthy eating habits; nd using alternative therapies. The outcomes that result from employing these strategies were identified as burden, depression and helplessness, stress for maintaining compliance, and dispirited interpersonal relationships. CONCLUSION: The results of this study suggest that most people with CHB in Korea have problems in psychosocial area. Thus health professionals need to provide not only informational support but also emotional one to improve quality of life of the people with CHB.