Once you are allowed to enter that tiny room with the examination table, the little chair, and the fluorescent light, you start counting down and impatiently wait for the doctor to come in, so that you can go over all your symptoms.
But what happens is that your doctor gives you no more than some couple of seconds before he interrupts your talk! Of course, this is so frustrating that it makes you wonder whether he even heard what you were saying!
A New Study: Doctors Don’t Really Listen To You
According to a recent study published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, on average, doctors don’t really listen to what their patients say or have to say!
It is also found that only 1 in 3 doctors give their patients the adequate amount of time to talk while the majority of them will only provide patients with 11 seconds to explain what’s going wrong with them!
And in case they happen to talk more than 11 seconds, doctors will immediately jump in with a word, question, or comment and interrupt the patient’s talk! Researchers videotaped 112 consultations at different clinics around the United States between patients and their doctors and once the recordings were ready, researchers have moved to the next step, which is analyzing!
Researchers tried to analyze the first few minutes of the consultations in the hope to find an answer to your question and guess what? That feeling you tend to have everytime you visit your doctor is definitely true. Your doctor is ‘’too busy to listen to your stories’’ that’s the conclusion researchers came up with!
The study exposes that only 36% of patients were given the chance to explain their reason for coming and visiting the doctor’s office while those who were allowed to talk about what they were experiencing ended up being interrupted 70% of the time.
And Those who were allowed to talk and weren’t interrupted have summarized their condition in 6 seconds. So, this way it becomes clear that the brief you talk, the higher are your chances to be heard! So, next time you are visiting your doctor, be smart and craft a brief testimony!
The study also exposes that primary care physicians are better listeners than specialists. Generally, primary care physicians are found to give their patients more time to explain their health condition and the symptoms they are experiencing.
The only explanation that the study has given to this latter discovery is that maybe because specialists have already been briefed on the reason why patients are visiting them!
However, when you take the expensive health care in the United States into consideration, you are definitely not cheered to know that doctors are in such a rush to get you out of there!
According to Naykky Singh Ospina, who is a professor assistant in the division of Endocrinology at the University of Florida, views this matter with a positive attitude and says that the doctor’s interruptions are necessary as they help the doctor to have more clarification about the patient’s condition.
Hence, they are beneficial if done respectfully! However, she added saying that the interruptions made at the early stage in the encounter will definitely provide no clarification and shouldn’t take place! In contrary, they might be the biggest factors that lead to diagnostic errors.
According to another recent study, diagnostic errors, namely 35% of them are not made in hospitals but in the doctor’s office. While another study exposed that 20% of patients who suffer from serious conditions are misdiagnosed by their primary doctors!
The only option you have is to be brief the maximum possible to higher your chances to be heard by your doctor and avoid the long unnecessary talk!
We know that this is horrible because doctors are supposed to listen and you are paying too much money for that consultation but buddy you have no better choice! Better heard than interrupted before you even say all that you need to say, right?