Navigation Links
Communication gap exists between seniors and surgeons, study finds

INDIANAPOLIS -- The decision to undergo surgery can be particularly difficult and confusing for older adults. In a study published in the July 2008 issue of the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, Richard M. Frankel, Ph.D., of the Indiana University School of Medicine, and colleagues report that older patients and their surgeons do not communicate effectively when exploring surgical treatment options.

The researchers audiotaped patient-surgeon consultations and later interviewed the patients regarding their concerns about surgery to find out what, if anything, they had not discussed with their surgeons. The researchers found that the older adults had raised only about half of the concerns mentioned in the subsequent interview.

"Unexpressed concerns are challenging because they can lead to different expectations and understanding of the problems patients are concerned about and treatment recommendations that are poorly tailored to patient needs," said Dr. Frankel, a professor of medicine at the IU School of Medicine and a Regenstrief research scientist. He is also is a member of the Center for Health Services Outcomes Research at the Regenstrief Institute and the Center for Implementing Evidence-Based Practice at the Richard L. Roudebush Veteran's Administration Medical Center in Indianapolis.

Dr. Frankel and his colleagues noted that if concerns are unexpressed, "physicians will have little chance to correct or modify them. Unfortunately unexpressed concerns may contribute to breakdowns in communication which are frustrating for both physicians and patients."

The overwhelming majority (84 percent) of older adult concerns related to the surgery itself. Concerns about anticipated quality of life after surgery, the post-surgery care facility and timing of surgery were among those most frequently voiced by older adults.

A mere 16 percent of older patient concerns were related to the surgeons including doubts about competency of the surgeon and the perceived tendency of surgeons to promote surgery as the only real treatment option.

The researchers found that surgeons generally do a good job of responding to patient concerns when they are raised. However they found that patients appear highly selective about what concerns they mention.

"Knowing that older adults frequently don't voice all their concerns should help surgeons create opportunities for patients who are reluctant to bring them up," said Dr. Frankel. The researchers found that patients most often raised concerns when the surgeon was describing treatment recommendations and possible options. Surprisingly, few responses were elicited when surgeons asked, "Do you have any questions or concerns?"

The authors report only one statistically significant finding when comparing concerns by race. White patients were about four times more likely to express concern about their physical well-being and "going under the knife" than African-American patients.

The authors focused on orthopedic surgery because the aging U.S. population will be increasingly faced with decisions about major orthopedic procedures like joint replacement.


Contact: Cindy Fox Aisen
Indiana University

Related medicine news :

1. April Stewart Joins OrthoSynetics(TM) as Corporate Communications Manager
2. Jean-Yves Naouri to Oversee Publicis Healthcare Communications Group (PHCG)
3. Autisms social struggles due to disrupted communication networks in brain
4. Access Granted to Present at the Collaborative Communications Summit: Health Technology Investment Forum
5. HealthSouth Appoints Mary Ann Arico as SVP - Investor Relations and Corporate Communications
6. Plan for Your Health Launches Campaign to Improve Doctor-Patient Communication
7. Legislation Brings Hope for People With Disabilities Left Out of New Communications Technologies
8. Study finds Childrens Hospital patient safety program improves caregiver/family communications
9. StayWell Custom Communications Announces Strategic Alliance With HealthMedia
10. Effective Communication of Clinical Studies for Maximum Impact
11. Wins International Award of Excellence From Healthcare Communications Marketing Association
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... 2016 , ... "FCPX editors can now reveal their media with growing colorful ... Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , ProSlice Color brings the ... can now reveal the media of their split screens with growing colorful panels. , ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Quality metrics are proliferating in cancer care, and are derived ... eye of the beholder, according to experts who offered insights and commentary in the ... Care. For the full issue, click here . , For the American Society ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... , ... June 26, 2016 , ... ... once they have been diagnosed with endometriosis. These women need a treatment plan ... require a comprehensive approach that can help for preservation of fertility and ultimately ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 25, 2016 , ... First ... United States, named Dr. Sesan Ogunleye, as the Medical Director of its new Mesquite-Samuell ... facility Medical Director of our new Mesquite location,” said Dr. James M. Muzzarelli, Executive ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... A recent article published June 14 ... The article goes on to state that individuals are now more comfortable seeking to ... operations such as calf and cheek reduction. The Los Angeles area medical group, Beverly ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... HOUSTON , June 23, 2016  MedSource ... platform as its e-clinical software solution of choice.  ... the best possible value to their clients by ... nowEDC.  The preferred relationship establishes nowEDC as the ... pricing for MedSource,s full-service clients.  "nowEDC has long ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 Any dentist who has made an ... current process. Many of them do not even offer this ... and high laboratory costs involved. And those who ARE able ... such a high cost that the majority of today,s patients ... Parsa Zadeh , founder of Dental Evolutions Inc. and ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... a startling report released today, National Safety Council research ... proven plan to eliminate prescription opioid overdoses. Prescription Nation ... tackling the worst drug crisis in recorded U.S. history, assigned a ... , New Mexico , Tennessee ... failing states, three – Michigan , ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: