Harriet S.MeyerMD, Contributing EditorDavid H.MorseMS, Journal Review EditorRobertHoganMD, adviser for new media
by Frederic W. Platt and Geoffrey H. Gordon, 201 pp, with illus, soft cover, $29.95, ISBN 0-7817-2044-3, Philadelphia, Pa, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 1999.
Medical interviewing is an enormously complex task. Physicians must ascertain symptoms, make diagnoses, get to know the patient in a broader psychosocial context, develop a therapeutic relationship, and counsel the patient about behaviors and therapies. Recent studies show the importance of doctor-patient communication for patient satisfaction, compliance, and clinical outcomes. All this depends on a 15 minute visit!
Students of the doctor-patient relationship know that specific techniques help in carrying out the interview's various functions. Platt and Gordon's Field Guide to the Difficult Patient Interview is a useful tool that summarizes practical techniques and strategies to improve our interactions with patients.
Patient InterviewsField Guide to the Difficult Patient Interview. JAMA. 2001;285(17):2257. doi:10.1001/jama.285.17.2257-JBK0502-4-1