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J Altern Complement Med. 2008 Jul;14(6):777-83. doi: 10.1089/acm.2007.7006.

Toward a sociological understanding of complementary and alternative medicine use.

Author information

  • 1Department of Behavioral Science, University of Kentucky College of Medicine, Lexington, KY 40506-9983, USA. tdstra00@email.uky.edu

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES:

The wide array of treatments and modalities comprising complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) represent a growing option for many individuals. Seeking to better understand this, much research has centered on identifying sociodemographic (e.g., age, gender, race) or social-psychologic (e.g., absorption, depression, coping) correlates of using CAM therapies. In contrast, sociological perspectives recognize the influence of larger-scale, external forces on individuals' motivations to seek alternative or complementary care.

AIM:

This paper, then, illustrates current and potential sociological approaches to understanding CAM use, and the importance of social forces that influence persons' decisions to utilize (or not) "unconventional" medical care.

PMID:
18578592
DOI:
10.1089/acm.2007.7006
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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