Health Behavior in Persons Living with Chronic Conditions

  • Eugene B. Gallagher
  • Terry D. Stratton


The historical shift from infectious to chronic disease has tremendous implications for health behavior, attitudes, and expectations concerning health and illness. Exclusive reliance on the prevailing “medical model” of illness, however, tends to perpetuate a health care system that is overly attuned to acute care and intervention, often at the expense of chronic illness and its sufferers. Looking at these inconsistencies, this chapter advances a psychosocial perspective on chronic illness—one that provides a more holistic view of the social processes that take place between the ill person and the illness. Using as examples two modern-day chronic diseases—diabetes and end-stage renal disease—the chapter discusses the potentially diverse behavioral impacts of chronic illness on the illness-bearer within the contexts of the ill person’s social networks, the professional medical providers, and society in general. In particular, the chapter advances issues regarding the negotiation of roles and responsibility within the confines of the traditional doctor-patient relationship, as well as those that occur within the broader rubric of social life.


Health Behavior Chronic Illness Chronic Patient Scarlet Fever Behavioral Impact 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Eugene B. Gallagher
    • 1
  • Terry D. Stratton
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Behavioral ScienceUniversity of Kentucky School of MedicineLexingtonUSA

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