‘Well, I knew this already’ : explaining personal genetic risk information through narrative meaning‐making

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Snell , K & Helén , I 2020 , ' ‘Well, I knew this already’ : explaining personal genetic risk information through narrative meaning‐making ' , Sociology of Health & Illness , vol. 42 , no. 3 , pp. 496-509 . https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-9566.13018

Title: ‘Well, I knew this already’ : explaining personal genetic risk information through narrative meaning‐making
Author: Snell, Karoliina; Helén, Ilpo
Contributor organization: Helsinki Collegium for Advanced Studies
Date: 2020-03-03
Language: eng
Number of pages: 14
Belongs to series: Sociology of Health & Illness
ISSN: 0141-9889
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-9566.13018
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/327928
Abstract: This article presents results from a Finnish focus group's study conducted among participants of a project called GeneRISK, in which the participants received a personal risk score for having a cardiovascular event based on genetic analysis, lifestyle and laboratory results. In the discussions, interpretations of the genetic risk score and its meaning were incorporated into personal narratives of health and illness. We argue that instead of serving as an explanation for health and illness, which can help guide people's lives and choices, the genetic risk information became an object of explanation. Therefore, the risk information did not create new conceptions of personal risk, nor did it generate enough power to push people to change their lifestyles. Instead, the risk information was used to strengthen the existing impression of personal risk and the narrative of personal health and illness.
Subject: 5141 Sociology
genetic risk
cardiovascular disease
focus groups
narratives
lifestyle
biographical disruption
Peer reviewed: Yes
Usage restriction: openAccess
Self-archived version: acceptedVersion


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