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In recent years, the rapid expansion in Internet access and computer-mediated communication has fostered new opportunities for individuals with health-related concerns to participate in supportive communication within a network of individuals dealing with similar issues. The aim of this study was to examine the nature of socially supportive communication(More)
In recent years, there has been a significant rise in the number of online support communities dedicated to issues surrounding infertility. The aim of this study was to focus on investigating the perceived disadvantages of online infertility support communities from the perspective of those who access and participate in them. A total of 295 participants(More)
The present study examined the nature of social support exchanged within an online HIV/AIDS support group. Content analysis was conducted with reference to five types of social support (information support, tangible assistance, esteem support, network support, and emotional support) on 85 threads (1,138 messages). Our analysis revealed that many of the(More)
OBJECTIVE The current research investigates the potential of online support groups (OSGs) to foster empowerment and how membership might affect the patient/health professional relationship. METHODS 246 participants across 33 OSGs completed an online questionnaire. RESULTS All empowerment processes and outcomes identified by van Uden-Kraan et al. [1](More)
This study examined the mechanism through which online support group (OSG) participation may promote patient empowerment among 340 individuals living with HIV/AIDS. Results from structural equation modelling revealed that greater use of OSGs was associated with more frequent occurrence of the empowering processes as measured by receiving useful information,(More)
The aims of this study were to explore the reasons for participation in an online support group for individuals affected by food allergy, its perceived advantages and disadvantages as well as impact on the relationship with healthcare providers. A total of 32 members of the Food Allergy Survivors Together (F.A.S.T.) online support group completed an online(More)
The present study explores the association between online support group use and health status, coping and social support among 640 individuals with HIV/AIDS. Results suggested that frequent users tended to be female, younger, single, and in a more advanced disease stage. After controlling for covariates, frequent users reported poorer health than non-users.(More)