Stories of African American women who are long-term breast cancer survivors

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Yvonne Ratchford Ford (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Susan Letvak

Abstract: The purpose of this study was to report the stories of African American (AA) women who are disease-free survivors of breast cancer, 10 or more years after initial diagnosis, and consider themselves to be thriving after cancer. Narrative inquiry was used to develop the stories into a cohesive whole. A womanist framework (Walker, 1983) was used as a lens through which to consider the data. In the narrative inquiry tradition, one blended story was derived from the data including an abstract for summary, orientation, complication to describe critical events, evaluation, result or outcome, and coda to relate the story of the past to the reality of today (Munhall, 2012). The story was developed from the following themes: (1) I'm still here; (2) And then I had cancer; (3) Can we talk?; (4) Peace in the valley; (5) They call it the red devil; (6) You are not alone; (7) The new normal; and (8) When I learn something, I share it. Findings from this study have implications for nursing research and practice, as well as care for long-term survivors of breast cancer. Using culturally relevant interventions can be helpful in caring for physical and spiritual needs. If researchers and clinicians can tailor their communication style and value the historical underpinnings of health-seeking behaviors in AA long-term breast cancer survivors, more support can be made available for this population.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2016
African American, Breast cancer, Long-term survivor, Narrative, Qualitative
African American women $x Health and hygiene
Breast $x Cancer $x Patients $v Biography
Cancer in women

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