August 25, 2011

What is the take home message?

For years, doctors have been trying to meet the informational needs of their patients. There has been much attention paid to patient/physician communication, but with shorter appointment times, physicians are pressed with finding what works with their particular patient population. Are they sure that their message is getting across to their patients?

This article in the New Yok Times by Jane E. Brody discusses the ongoing pursuit of better communication between patient and physician, particularly in the case of kidney disease. She sites a study published by a team from Vanderbilt University Medical Center this past March in The American Journal of Kidney Disease which found that most people with kidney disease are unaware of their diagnosis.

And among those who do know, a previous study of 676 patients with moderate to advanced kidney disease had found that more than a third knew little or nothing about it and nearly half knew nothing about treatment options should their kidneys fail completely.

These people were, for the most part, middle-aged white men with at least a high school degree. This study pointed out many issues in patient understanding of kidney disease and the importance of medical “compliance”.

To read more, visit this article at the New York Times website.

Posted by Staff at 01:34 PM

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