The power in being together for young adults who have heart disease – the photoshoot experience

Robyn Gallagher, Ellen Potter, Linda Thomson Mangnall, Laila Ladak, Patrick Gallagher, Lis Neubeck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives The study aimed to determine perceived motivations and benefits of photoshoot participation for young adults who have heart disease. Background Feeling isolated and different can have lifelong affects on quality of life in heart disease survivors. Photoshoots, where people create a photographic image of themselves, promote positive interpretation of their cardiac illness experience, but participant experiences remain under-investigated. Methods Young adult heart disease support group members completing a photoshoot were interviewed and data were thematically analyzed. Results Seven females and one male aged 20–47 years participated. The main theme, People Like Me, emphasized feelings of being different, isolated and uncertain due to the heart disease. Other themes related to support gained from people who were not like them, gaining and providing support to their peers. The photoshoot enabled a highly valued collective feeling. Conclusions For young adult heart disease survivors, the photoshoot provides a fun, social opportunity to reduce isolation and share experiences.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)199-204
Number of pages6
JournalHeart and Lung: Journal of Acute and Critical Care
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - May 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Automatic implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD)
  • Cardiac disease
  • Congenital heart disease
  • Experiences
  • Photoshoot
  • Social support
  • Young adult


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