Predictors of the change in the expression of emotional support within an online breast cancer support group: A longitudinal study

Woohyun Yoo, Ming Yuan Chih, Min Woo Kwon, Jung Hwan Yang, Eunji Cho, Bryan McLaughlin, Kang Namkoong, Dhavan V. Shah, David H. Gustafson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objectives: To explore how the expression of emotional support in an online breast cancer support group changes over time, and what factors predict this pattern of change. Methods: We conducted growth curve modeling with data collected from 192 participants in an online breast cancer support group within the Comprehensive Health Enhancement Support System (CHESS) during a 24-week intervention period. Results: Individual expression of emotional support tends to increase over time for the first 12 weeks of the intervention, but then decrease slightly with time after that. In addition, we found that age, living situation, comfort level with computer and the Internet, coping strategies were important factors in predicting the changing pattern of expressing emotional support. Conclusions: Expressing emotional support changed in a quadratic trajectory, with a range of factors predicting the changing pattern of expression. Practical implications: These results can provide important information for e-health researchers and physicians in determining the benefits individuals can gain from participation in should CMSS groups as the purpose of cancer treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)88-95
Number of pages8
JournalPatient Education and Counseling
Volume90
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2013

Keywords

  • Breast cancer
  • Comprehensive Health Enhancement Support System (CHESS)
  • Computer-mediated social support (CMSS) group
  • Expression effects
  • Latent Growth Curve (LGC) modeling

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