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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://dspace.lboro.ac.uk/2134/14758

Title: Genetic risk online and offline: two ways of being susceptible to blood clots
Authors: Saukko, Paula
Keywords: Risk
Risk perception
Online health groups
Genetic risk
Issue Date: 2009
Publisher: Routledge (© Taylor & Francis Group)
Citation: SAUKKO, P., 2009. Genetic risk online and offline: two ways of being susceptible to blood clots. Health Risk & Society, 11 (1), pp.1-16.
Abstract: Social science research into online health groups often studies characteristics of Internet communication, such as anonymity and ability to connect individuals across distance, which facilitate unique modes of support between people with similar illnesses. This article compares discussion in an online group for people with a genetic susceptibility for deep vein thrombosis with offline interviews with individuals with the same condition. Active participants in the online group were mostly acutely or chronically ill, and the intense discussion revolved around the use of anticoagulant medications with potentially serious side-effects. Most of the individuals interviewed offline were healthy and described themselves as ‘blasé’ about the condition, even if they were sometimes poorly informed. The findings indicate that online groups do indeed support their members but the support may focus on specific practices, such as the use of drugs. Drawing on multi-sited ethnography this article suggests studying online groups in relation to other possible ways of relating to health. Discerning what kinds of health identities and practices online groups cultivate is particularly important when investigating new ‘at risk’ conditions, which open up a broad range of possible identities and preventive actions.
Description: This paper is closed access.
Version: Closed access
DOI: 10.1080/13698570802538894
URI: https://dspace.lboro.ac.uk/2134/14758
Publisher Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13698570802538894
ISSN: 1369-8575
Appears in Collections:Closed Access (Communication, Media, Social and Policy Studies)

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