Social Representations of Cancer and Chemotherapy in the Cancer Patient’s Family

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Ximena Palacios Espinosa, María Isabel González, Bruna Zani


This qualitative study aimed to analyze the Social Representations (SR) of cancer and chemotherapy in 25 families of adult cancer patients with whom in-depth interviews were conducted and who participated in a free association test. We used Atlas.ti for the data analysis which were analyzed was done based on SR theory. It was found that the patient’s family member plays a central role; they have various functions such as support and containment are as involved as the patient in the disease process. Thus, the family members represent cancer and chemotherapy in a predominantly negative way, favoring the presence of anxiety and suffering.

Palabras clave

social representation theory; social representations; cancer; chemotherapy; family

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