Cascading Losses: A Case Study of Suffering from Head and Neck Cancer
In this case study, we analyzed an online illness narrative written by a middle-aged man living with HIV/AIDS who received a diagnosis of squamous cell cancer of the tongue. We found that the onset of a second illness initiated a series of cascading losses that became increasingly problematic, severe, and interconnected. In response to these losses, the author developed several coping strategies, including sharing his story with others and engaging in magical thinking. The findings of this case study broaden our understanding of what it means to live with a complex and unusual combination of illnesses. We conclude with implications for practitioners and scholars engaged in the sociology of loss.
Illness, Crisis, & Loss
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