Communication that Changes Lives: Social Support within an Online Health Community for ALS

Susan Stewart-Loane, Steven D'Alessandro

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    33 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Impaired communication due to a disabling illness can lead to reduced participation in community life. Online health communities can provide a substitute community for the purpose of social support and information sharing. This study examines communication between participants in an online community for patients and carers affected by Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, a degenerative neurological disease affecting communication and mobility. The study finds community members engaged in a dynamic interchange of information and social support. The results contribute to understanding of communication and social support needs of people with high levels of disability.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)236-251
    Number of pages16
    JournalCommunication Quarterly
    Volume61
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Apr 2013

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