Perceived social support, family environment and psychosocial recovery in bone marrow transplant long-term survivors

Alexandros Molasiotis, O. B.A. Van Den Akker, B. J. Boughton

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

79 Citations (Scopus)


This report examines perceptions of social support and family dynamics in bone marrow transplant (BMT) long-term survivors, as part of a larger study examining issues of quality of life and psychosocial adjustment in this patient group. Ninety one BMT survivors participated in the study. Their responses were compared with those of a matched control group of 73 patients receiving maintenance chemotherapy (MC). The results indicated that the BMT group received more social support than the MC group. Main sources of support were the patients' immediate family members. No significant differences in the typology and dynamics of family environments were observed between groups. However, the groups were significantly different compared with healthy, non-distressed families in cohesion, control and conflict. It was of importance to note that a considerable number of BMT subjects reported at least one nurse as a person who provides support to them, indicating the potential important role of nurses in the psychosocial adjustment of BMT long-term survivors. Strong family relationships were associated in both the BMT and MC groups with significantly better adjustment with respect to their domestic, extended family or social environment, and psychological distress. Social support and family relationships might be two of the main spheres of life contributing to higher levels of quality of life, and their important role as a stressor-filter is highlighted.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)317-325
Number of pages9
JournalSocial Science and Medicine
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 1997
Externally publishedYes


  • Bone marrow transplantation
  • Family relationships
  • Psychosocial recovery
  • Social support

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • History and Philosophy of Science


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