Cancer and cancer treatment: Social representations of the general population, cancer patients and health professionals

González, María Isabel (2013) Cancer and cancer treatment: Social representations of the general population, cancer patients and health professionals, [Dissertation thesis], Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna. Dottorato di ricerca in Psicologia sociale, dello sviluppo e delle organizzazioni, 25 Ciclo. DOI 10.6092/unibo/amsdottorato/5769.
Documenti full-text disponibili:
Documento PDF (Español) - Richiede un lettore di PDF come Xpdf o Adobe Acrobat Reader
Download (1MB) | Anteprima


The present study consists of three qualitative studies whose purpose was to know the representations constructed by the general population, by oncological patients and health professionals, regarding cancer, chemotherapy and bone marrow transplant. This study also carried out an analysis of similarities and differences between them. It was done in Bogotá (Colombia) with 55 people: 20 patients with cancer in process for bone marrow transplant, 20 people without cancer diagnosis and 15 people who work with patients with cancer. An in-depth interview was performed with each of the participants, as well as free, classical and by substitution associations of the words “cancer”, “chemotherapy” and “bone marrow transplant”. The data obtained was analyzed in light of the Theory of Social Representations (TSR). The analysis of the information followed the research technique of qualitative analysis of content in order to find symbolic significances and to construct, to denominate and to define categories. For the three groups, cancer is a terrible disease that could lead to death. Health personnel and the general population believe that the disease creates terror, anxiety and fear. Patients are aware of the seriousness and the consequent fear triggered by a disease that changes everything, produces suffering, pain, obliges them to depend of someone else and that could lead to death. Health professionals consider that patients can live cancer as a punishment and the general population believes that it can be the consequence of unhealthy life habits. For all, chemotherapy is a treatment for the disease that, one the one hand, produces difficult and visible collateral effects and creates negative feelings of fear and anxiety and, on the other hand, constitutes an option and a possibility for healing. The bone marrow transplant represents, for all of them, an opportunity to live.

Tipologia del documento
Tesi di dottorato
González, María Isabel
Dottorato di ricerca
Scuola di dottorato
Scienze umanistiche
Settore disciplinare
Settore concorsuale
Parole chiave
Cancer, chemotherapy, bone marrow transplant, Social Representations
Data di discussione
16 Aprile 2013

Altri metadati

Statistica sui download

Gestione del documento: Visualizza la tesi