Journal article

Rehabilitating the sick role: the experiences of high-risk women who undergo risk reducing breast surgery

Nina Hallowell, Louise Heiniger, Brandi Baylock, Melanie Price, Phyllis Butow

HEALTH SOCIOLOGY REVIEW | ROUTLEDGE JOURNALS, TAYLOR & FRANCIS LTD | Published : 2015

Abstract

In recent years, Talcott Parsons' work has come under renewed scrutiny by sociologists who argue that his concept of the sick role has a role to play in current accounts of health and illness. In this paper we describe the ways in which Australian women who had undergone elective risk-reducing breast surgery (with or without ovarian surgery) spoke about their convalescence. Women presented two contrasting recovery narratives in describing their experiences, with the negative effects of breast surgery either minimised or emphasised. In an effort to explain these differences, we draw upon the Parsonian concept of the sick role and argue that the extent to which women either embraced or rejecte..

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Grants

Awarded by National Health and Medical Research Council


Funding Acknowledgements

kConFab is supported by grants from the National Breast Cancer Foundation, the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) and by the Queensland Cancer Fund, the Cancer Councils of New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia, and the Cancer Foundation of Western Australia. The kConFab Psychosocial study has been funded by National Health and Medical Research Council Project Grants [153824] [301930] [457316].