The Effects of Expressing Religious Support Online for Breast Cancer Patients

Bryan Mclaughlin, Jung Hwan Yang, Woohyun Yoo, Bret Shaw, Soo Yun Kim, Dhavan Shah, David Gustafson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The growth of online support groups has led to an expression effects paradigm within the health communication literature. Although religious support expression is characterized as a typical subdimension of emotional support, we argue that in the context of a life-threatening illness, the inclusion of a religious component creates a unique communication process. Using data from an online group for women with breast cancer, we test a theoretical expression effects model. Results demonstrate that for breast cancer patients, religious support expression has distinct effects from general emotional support messages, which highlights the need to further theorize expression effects along these lines.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)762-771
Number of pages10
JournalHealth communication
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2 2016
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Communication


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