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Am J Alzheimers Dis Other Demen. 2010 Sep;25(6):513-20. doi: 10.1177/1533317510372924. Epub 2010 Jun 17.

Patient-centered communication during the disclosure of a dementia diagnosis.

Author information

  • 1Department of Psychology, Washington University, St. Louis, MO 63130, USA. zaleta@wustl.edu

Abstract

This study examined physician use of patient-centered communication during disclosure of a dementia diagnosis. Fifty-four patients (mean age = 74.13) and companions (mean age = 65.67; n = 34 spouses/partners, 12 adult children, 8 other) were diagnosed with very mild (n = 36) or mild (n = 18) dementia at an Alzheimer's Disease Research Center. Audio recordings of these triadic encounters were evaluated with the Roter Interaction Analysis System. Physicians utilized moderate but variable amounts of patient-centered behaviors including positive rapport building, facilitation, and patient activation (P < .001). Physicians far less frequently used emotional rapport building (P < 0.001). Physicians who demonstrated more patient-centered communication also exhibited greater positive affect (P < 0.05). The use of patient-centered behaviors and positive affect was more variable between physicians than within physicians and may be more dependent on individual physician characteristics than dementia severity or age and gender of patients and companions.

PMID:
20558851
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3031460
Free PMC Article
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