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J Neurol. 2012 Dec;259(12):2605-10. doi: 10.1007/s00415-012-6548-9. Epub 2012 May 26.

Disclosing the diagnosis of multiple sclerosis: the Profile Project.

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Department of Neurology, San Raffaele Scientific Institute, via Olgettina 48, 20132 Milan, Italy.


Communicating the diagnosis of multiple sclerosis (MS) is a challenging task, often undertaken with discomfort by most neurologists. Only a few studies have investigated patients' satisfaction with timing and way of receiving the diagnosis, but surveys regarding physicians' attitude towards diagnosis disclosure are even more limited. The goal of this work was to highlight Italian neurologists' behavioral and emotional approach to MS patients, making them sensitive to their difficulties and to the importance of an empathic relationship. The majority of Italian neurologists participating in our study have a good perception of their ability to manage this difficult communicating process and believe in the great effect this moment may have on a life-long disease experience. Improving communication skills may help the therapeutic alliance, enhancing patients' acceptance of the disease, as well as motivation and adherence to treatment.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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