Navigation Links
Spiritual Beliefs Part of Health Care for Some
Date:9/11/2008

Most are happy to discuss subject with eye docs, says researcher

THURSDAY, Sept. 11 (HealthDay News) -- Although you might expect the eye doctor's office to be the last place you would have a discussion about spirituality, recent research suggests that most people would appreciate such a conversation.

Almost half of those included in the study attended weekly religious services,, and 82 percent felt that prayer was very important to their sense of well-being, according to the study, which was published in the September issue of the Archives of Ophthalmology.

"Patients were interested in having their physicians ask them about their religion and spirituality. They seemed to crave a personal relationship," said study author Gina Magyar-Russell, an instructor and clinical psychologist in the department of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore.

However, Magyar-Russell said there are two caveats to the study -- one is that it may hold true only for Christians, and the other is that it may hold true only for those with serious eye disease, because the people included in this study were predominantly Christian and most were losing or had poor vision in one or both eyes.

"Spirituality can affect the physical and emotional health of patients in quite significant ways," said Dr. Harold G. Koenig, a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Duke University Medical Center.

"If they don't know about their patients' spirituality, then they're practicing medicine without all of the information they need, because [spirituality] can influence the patient's prognosis and compliance," explained Koenig, who is also co-director of Duke's Center for Spirituality, Theology and Health.

The study included 124 consecutive eye clinic patients who completed a questionnaire that included questions about their spirituality. Sixty percent were being seen for vision problems related to diabetes, 15 percent for vein blockages, and the rest were being seen for other eye problems, such as macular degeneration.

Sixty percent were moderately or very worried about their eye problem, and one-third had poor vision in at least one eye.

Seventy-seven percent identified themselves as Christian, while 6 percent were Jewish. Three percent said they were agnostic. Forty-five percent attended weekly religious services, according to the study.

Few -- just 2.4 percent -- believed that God caused their illness. Almost 70 percent felt that God gave them strength to help them be "at peace" with their declining vision.

So, when doctors are actually trained to ask questions about spirituality, what can they do with this information? Magyar-Russell said that if their patients are using religion in a positive way, such as turning to God for support, then doctors can just listen and be supportive. But, if they hear that their patients feel that God is punishing them somehow or they feel abandoned by God, then the physician could refer them to a hospital chaplain or ask them if they have a pastor or priest that they could talk to about these feelings.

"When people are having religious struggles, they die more quickly and are in worse physical health," said Koenig. "When people use religion to help them cope in a positive way, it reduces stress and can affect health in a positive way.

Both Koenig and Magyar-Russell said more physicians need to be trained in giving a proper spiritual evaluation.

"Less than 10 percent of doctors do this in an regular way, even with dying patients, and that's because most haven't been trained," Koenig said.

More information

To learn more about how spirituality might affect your health and why it's important for your doctor to know your feelings, visit the American Academy of Family Physicians' FamilyDoctor Web site.



SOURCES: Gina Magyar-Russell, Ph.D., instructor and clinical psychologist, department of psychiatry and behavioral sciences, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Baltimore; Harold G. Koenig, M.D., professor, psychiatry and behavioral sciences, associate professor, medicine, Duke University Medical Center, and co-director, Center for Spirituality, Theology and Health at Duke, Durham, N.C.; September 2008, Archives of Ophthalmology


'/>"/>
Copyright©2008 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Hallucinogen Gives Lasting Spiritual Boost
2. Spiritual effects of hallucinogens persist, Johns Hopkins researchers report
3. Internationally Known Psychic Christina Predicts Guides Others to Embrace a More Spiritual Way of Life
4. Spiritual Health Experts Speak at Chaplains Conference in Pittsburgh March 8-12
5. Most Psychiatrists Open to Discussing Spiritual Concerns
6. Health Care Bill Omits Access to Spiritual Care
7. New Yorkers Deserve Access to Spiritually Based Healing
8. Spirituality Helps Older Black Women Beat Hypertension
9. Spiritual Healer/Psychic-Medium Reaches International Status!
10. Cultural Beliefs May Keep Blacks From Hospice Care
11. Violence against women impairs childrens health
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Spiritual Beliefs Part of Health Care for Some
(Date:12/9/2016)... ... December 09, 2016 , ... The ... Hotel in New York, NY, on December 3rd, to benefit Holy Name Medical ... the annual event, which raised over $1 million - the largest event in ...
(Date:12/9/2016)... ... 09, 2016 , ... "I had a terrible time trying to get my ... that if the nebulizer had a more child-friendly design, then children would be more ... the patent-pending NEBY to avoid the need to deliver medication via a nebulizer mask. ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... ... 2016 , ... The West Virginia Medical Institute (WVMI) announced ... name change aligns the entire company with its existing Quality Insights branded projects ... are very proud of the achievements associated with the West Virginia Medical Institute ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... ... December 08, 2016 , ... ... (WCRI) officially opened registration today for its 33rd Annual Issues & Research ... . , The theme of the conference is “Persistent Challenges and New Opportunities: ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... ... December 08, 2016 , ... ... that “Natural Language Processing–Enabled and Conventional Data Capture Methods for Input to Electronic ... Informatics . , Results of the comparative usability study demonstrate that a dictation-based ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/9/2016)... 2016 Research and Markets has announced the ... to their offering. ... The global travel vaccines market to grow at a CAGR ... the present scenario and the growth prospects of the global travel ... considers the revenue generated from the sales of various vaccines administered ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... IRIDEX Corporation (NASDAQ: IRIX ) today ... common stock, $0.01 par value (the "Offering" with such shares ... final terms of the Offering will depend on market and ... be no assurance as to whether or when the Offering ... net proceeds it will receive from this offering for working ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... , Dec. 8, 2016  The global biosurgery market ... during the forecast period of 2016 to 2021. The ... 2021 from USD 18.21 billion in 2016. The market ... incidences of sports related injuries and spinal problems, increasing ... need of effective blood loss management. In ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: