Departmental Papers (SPP)

Document Type

Journal Article

Date of this Version

January 2001


African American women are less likely to be diagnosed with breast cancer than white women but are more likely to be adversely affected. However, little attention has been paid to how these women cope with the disease or whether they differ from white women in coping with breast cancer. Using a comparative design, this study analyzed the differences in coping strategies and use of social support between African American and white women with breast cancer. Findings suggest that both groups tend to seek social support as a way of coping with their breast cancer but differ in their sources of support. Social workers are urged to consider that there may be differences in sources of social support between racially and ethnically diverse populations. These differences may have an impact on the type of support provided and therefore on patients' need for service.


Reprinted from Journal of Psychosocial Oncology, Volume 21, Issue 2, 2001, pages 17-38. Publisher URL:


breast cancer, social support, coping, race, African American



Date Posted: 15 December 2006

This document has been peer reviewed.