Chronic illness as biographical disruption

Sociol Health Illn. 1982 Jul;4(2):167-82. doi: 10.1111/1467-9566.ep11339939.


The paper is based on semi-structured interviews with a series of rheumatoid arthritis patients. Chronic illness is conceptualised as a particular type of disruptive event. This disruption highlights the resources (cognitive and material) available to individuals, modes of explanation for pain and suffering, continuities and discontinuities between professional and lay thought, and sources of variation in experience.

MeSH terms

  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid
  • Chronic Disease*
  • England
  • Humans
  • Sociology, Medical*