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Study Examines Race-Based Differences in Social Support Needs among Breast Cancer Patients

In a Psycho-Oncology study of 28 women who were being treated for breast cancer and were participating in focus groups, White participants noted that having other breast cancer survivors in their support network was essential for meeting their social support needs. Black participants did not reference other breast cancer survivors as part of their networks, however.

Wednesday, February 6, 2019 12:01 am EST

In a Psycho-Oncology study of 28 women who were being treated for breast cancer and were participating in focus groups, White participants noted that having other breast cancer survivors in their support network was essential for meeting their social support needs. Black participants did not reference other breast cancer survivors as part of their networks, however.

Notably, both White and Black participants used the focus group environment to provide social support to each other.

The findings point to the importance of knowing and understanding the nuances of patients’ support needs. Interventions should address these needs by facilitating connections among survivors, offering more avenues to receive support from clinicians, and encouraging women to invite family and friends to be active contributors in their care.

Additional Information

Link to Study: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/pon.4979  

About Journal 

Psycho-Oncology is concerned with the psychological, social, behavioral, and ethical aspects of cancer. This subspeciality addresses the two major psychological dimensions of cancer: the psychological responses of patients to cancer at all stages of the disease, and that of their families and caretakers; and the psychological, behavioral and social factors that may influence the disease process. Psycho-oncology is an area of multi-disciplinary interest and has boundaries with the major specialities in oncology: the clinical disciplines (surgery, medicine, pediatrics, radiotherapy), epidemiology, immunology, endocrinology, biology, pathology, bioethics, palliative care, rehabilitation medicine, clinical trials research and decision making, as well as psychiatry and psychology.

About Wiley

Wiley is a global leader in research and education. Our online scientific, technical, medical, and scholarly journals, and our digital learning, assessment, certification and student-lifecycle services and solutions help universities, academic societies, businesses, governments and individuals to achieve their academic and professional goals. For more than 200 years, we have delivered consistent performance to our stakeholders. The Company's website can be accessed at www.wiley.com.

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