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Chir Ital. 2001 Jan-Feb;53(2):267-73.

[Multicenter prospective study of informed consent in general surgery].

[Article in Italian]

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Insegnamento di Chirurgia Generale, Università degli Studi di Roma La Sapienza, Azienda Policlinico Umberto I, Roma.


To understand the level of acceptance, awareness and usefulness of informed consent, a group of 119 patients (59 men and 60 women) from different types of hospitals were given a questionnaire which required only 'YES or NO' answers, both before and after surgery. The questionnaire concerned the patient's knowledge about pathology, operative risks, approval, anxiety caused, understanding of information received and consent given, and also if he would inform a relative in the same condition. From the analysis of the results it was established that: the more information a patient has about his illness and operation risks, the more he will want to have; the less he knows the less he will want to know, and he will also have more faith in the doctors. Some patients would not inform a relative with a similar pathology. To conclude, informed consent, instead of being a right of the patient is progressively becoming more a right of the doctor. It does not have any real effect on the patient's choice but is useful, as it represents a moment of personalised attention from medical personnel, though the patient may not completely understand the information received. There are few advantages in strictly medical terms but informed consent has increased malpractice litigation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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