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 24 May 2018

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News

Communication between physicians and patients with ulcerative colitis

April's issue of the Inflammatory Bowel Diseaes examines in-office patient–physician visits to examine communication between them about ulcerative colitis.

News image

Dr David Rubin and colleagues analyzed in-office communication between patients with ulcerative colitis (UC) and their gastroenterologists.

Participating gastroenterologists identified eligible patients with scheduled clinic visits.

Patients consented to have their visit recorded.

Follow-up interviews were conducted separately with gastroenterologists and patients.

The researchers analyzed transcripts using sociolinguistic methods to explore quality of life impacts, treatment goals, and attitudes to therapies.

In the European and U.S. research, the trend was for patients not to discuss ulcerative colitis quality of life impacts during their visits.

3% of patients described absence of inflammation as a treatment goal
Inflammatory Bowel Diseases

In the U.S. research, the team noted that complete patient–physician alignment on quality of life impacts in 40% of cases.

Variation in treatment goals was seen between gastroenterologists and patients.

The team observed that 3% of U.S. patients described absence of inflammation as a treatment goal versus 25% of gastroenterologists.

The research team noted that this goal was not always conveyed to the patient during visits.

Consistent with guidelines, the found that physicians generally framed biologic therapy as suitable for patients refractory to conventional therapies.

However, although putative efficacy offered by biologic therapy is generally aligned with patients' stated treatment goals, many considered biologic therapy as more appropriate for more severe disease than theirs.

Dr Rubin's team concludes, "Alignment between patients and physicians on ulcerative colitis quality of life impact, treatment goals, and requirement of advanced therapies is poor."

"New tools are needed to cover this gap."

Inflamm Bowel Dis 2017: 23(4):494-501
24 March 2017

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