Portrait of a process: Arts-based research in a head and neck cancer clinic

Mark A. Gilbert, William M. Lydiatt, Virginia A. Aita, Regina E Robbins, Dennis P. McNeilly, Michele Marie Desmarais

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The role of art in medicine is complex, varied and uncertain. To examine one aspect of the relationship between art and medicine, investigators analysed the interactions between a professional artist and five adult patients with head and neck cancer as they cocreated portraits in a clinical setting. The artist and four members of an interdisciplinary team analysed the portraits as well as journal entries, transcripts of portrait sessions and semistructured interviews. Over the course of 5 months, 24 artworks evolved from sittings that allowed both the patients and the artist to collaborate around stories of illness, suffering and recovery. Using narrative inquiry and qualitative arts-based research techniques five emergent themes were identified: embracing uncertainties; developing trusting relationships; engaging in reflective practices; creating shared stories; and empowerment. Similar themes are found in successful physician–patient relationships. This paper will discuss these findings and potential implications for healthcare and medical education.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)57-62
Number of pages6
JournalMedical Humanities
Volume42
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2016

Fingerprint

Art
Head and Neck Neoplasms
Research
Medicine
Medical Education
Uncertainty
Research Design
Research Personnel
Interviews
Delivery of Health Care
Head and Neck Cancer
Clinic
Artist

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Philosophy

Cite this

Gilbert, M. A., Lydiatt, W. M., Aita, V. A., Robbins, R. E., McNeilly, D. P., & Desmarais, M. M. (2016). Portrait of a process: Arts-based research in a head and neck cancer clinic. Medical Humanities, 42(1), 57-62. https://doi.org/10.1136/medhum-2015-010813

Portrait of a process : Arts-based research in a head and neck cancer clinic. / Gilbert, Mark A.; Lydiatt, William M.; Aita, Virginia A.; Robbins, Regina E; McNeilly, Dennis P.; Desmarais, Michele Marie.

In: Medical Humanities, Vol. 42, No. 1, 03.2016, p. 57-62.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Gilbert, MA, Lydiatt, WM, Aita, VA, Robbins, RE, McNeilly, DP & Desmarais, MM 2016, 'Portrait of a process: Arts-based research in a head and neck cancer clinic', Medical Humanities, vol. 42, no. 1, pp. 57-62. https://doi.org/10.1136/medhum-2015-010813
Gilbert, Mark A. ; Lydiatt, William M. ; Aita, Virginia A. ; Robbins, Regina E ; McNeilly, Dennis P. ; Desmarais, Michele Marie. / Portrait of a process : Arts-based research in a head and neck cancer clinic. In: Medical Humanities. 2016 ; Vol. 42, No. 1. pp. 57-62.
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