Special aspects of social support: Qualitative analysis of oncologic rehabilitation through a belly dancing peer support group

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Tumour-related peer support groups (PSGs) show long-term development in quality of life and coping, and decrease distress in cancer care. To clarify channels of social support in oncologic rehabilitation by combined exercise and psychosocial therapy, individual semi-structured interviews were conducted after 1 year additional belly dance rehabilitation in a closed PSG among 51 patients with malignant tumour diagnosis in Budapest, Hungary. Interview data were transcribed and analysed using qualitative content analysis (ATLAS.ti 6 Win). Results suggest that group experience provides emotional-, practical- and informational support. We could point out specific social effects of “role model” function and extend the coping model. The group dispose all the features of effective suggestion and may be effectively applied as additional therapy for patients with malignancies. The extended coping model and the introduction of “role model” function could be useful for PSGs’ efficacy assessment.

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