Autistic Experiences of Breast Cancer


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We are a team of researchers from the Psychology Department and the Social and Political Sciences, Philosophy and Anthropology Department at the University of Exeter.


A research project that will explore autistic people’s experience of breast cancer from diagnosis through hospital treatment in the UK, where interaction with hospitals, procedures, and treatment regimes are at their highest. We want to understand what it is like for autistic people who have had breast cancer from those that have experienced it.


To fully understand what breast cancer experience is like for autistic people we need to ask autistic people. This research project recognises the importance of participatory and co-design in autism research. This research project is being led by a researcher who is autistic and has had breast cancer. We will be including autistic people throughout the whole research process to make sure the right questions are being asked and that the research will be of use and reflective of the experiences of the people involved. To do this an Advisory Group will be set up to ensure that the project is representing the needs of autistic people.


This research project will begin in June 2023 and will continue for 3 years.

3D model of a person with arms bent at elbow expressing why?