Author(s): White MK, Malik T
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Abstract In 1998, some 179,000 women in the United States were newly diagnosed with breast cancer, and 48,500 women died from it. Early detection by mammography, physical examination, and breast self-examination improves survival rates and can decrease mortality. The clinician's level of comfort with discussing education and prevention with patients can influence patients' adherence to preventive measures. Improved clinician-patient interpersonal communication has a demonstrated positive impact on adherence and health outcomes. We developed and pilot tested a core curriculum on breast health aimed at primary care community physicians and resident house staff. The goal was to improve interpersonal communication between clinician and patient. Two groups of participants attended either a week-long or a 2-week-long training program consisting of four components: a brief demonstration of an interview and breast examination, interviews and breast examinations with a standardized patient, and two separate workshops of varying length. This pilot program had a significant impact on clinician behavior and knowledge. We recommend further investigation of this area with larger sample sizes.
This article was published in J Womens Health
and referenced in Journal of Cytology & Histology