The Experience of Young Adult Cancer Patients Described Through Online Narratives

Bora Kim, MN; David Michael Gillham, PhD


Cancer Nurs. 2013;36(5):377-384. 

In This Article


This study explored the experiences of YAACs through their blog content to gain a better understanding of their experiences and how this is expressed in the blog environment. Young adult cancer patients are an understudied population compared with other age groups yet undergo complicated cancer journeys because of their specific life stage. It is evident that a number of different approaches, such as discussion groups and blogs, can be used when developing Internet-based cancer support services for YAACs. The Internet presents minimal geographical limitations and is a familiar mode of support for the young generation. It also provides young cancer patients with a space in which to express themselves and to share experiences with those who are of similar age and in similar situations. It can be particularly helpful when these patients are isolated or physically unable to interact with other people because of treatment requirements or physical deterioration. Future studies should investigate other types of Internet cancer communities and how they can benefit the development of Internet-based support networks for YAACs.