Cure or Carcinogen A Framing Analysis of European Radon Spa Websites

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Institutes & Expert groups

  • AGES GmbH - Autrian agency for health and food safety
  • VVI - National Radiation Protection Institute
  • UMB - Matej Bel University
  • Bfs - Bundesamt Für Strahlenschutz - Federal Office for Radiation Protection

Documents & links



Objectives: Radon, a radioactive gas, is among the leading causes of lung-cancer worldwide. While public health authorities emphasize radon’s health risks, there are spas across Europe which claim health benefits of radon. This study investigates how websites of European radon spas frame radon gas, in order to understand the potential controversy between “radon as carcinogen” and “radon as cure,” and its potential impact on public health interventions. Methods: A two-phased frame analysis of websites of radon spas (n = 26) situated in the European Union. Results: Five frames are identified, which present radon as a 1) source of health, 2) natural gas, 3) (non) risk, 4) luxury and 5) fountain of youth. These five partly overlapping frames are at times in clear contrast with the ways in which radon is presented in a public health context. Conclusion: Being aware of the existence and contents of radon frames, which potentially challenge or contradict public health interventions, helps responsible authorities in designing more effective campaigns and interventions.


Original languageEnglish
Article number1604559
Pages (from-to)1-7
Number of pages7
Journal International Journal of Public Health
Publication statusPublished - 22 Apr 2022


  • Public healt, Health communication, Radon, Frame analysis, Spas, Radon spa

ID: 7540916