We use cookies to understand how you use our site and to improve your experience. This includes personalizing content and advertising. To learn more, click here. By continuing to use our site, you accept our use of cookies. Cookie Policy.

Features Partner Sites Information LinkXpress
Sign In
Advertise with Us
Ampronix,  Inc

Download Mobile App


ATTENTION: Due to the COVID-19 PANDEMIC, many events are being rescheduled for a later date, converted into virtual venues, or altogether cancelled. Please check with the event organizer or website prior to planning for any forthcoming event.
29 Aug 2020 - 02 Sep 2020
Virtual Venue

Patients Commonly Withhold Information from Doctors

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 18 Dec 2018
Print article
Image: Research shows that patients regularly hold back information from their doctors (Photo courtesy of Getty Images).
Image: Research shows that patients regularly hold back information from their doctors (Photo courtesy of Getty Images).
A new study reveals that patients often hold back relevant medical information from their doctors that could be prejudicial or beneficial to their healthcare.

Researchers at Middlesex Community College (MXCC; Middletown, CT, USA), the University of Utah (Salt Lake City, USA), the University of Iowa (Iowa City, USA), and other institutions conducted a study involving 4,510 adults in order to examine the frequency of patient nondisclosure of medically relevant Information and their reasons for doing so. Participants were recruited via two online surveys, one using Amazon Mechanical Turk (MTurk) from March 16 to 30, 2015 (2,096 respondents), and the other via Survey Sampling International (SSI) from November 6 to 17, 2015 (3,011 respondents).

The results showed that 81% of the MTurk participants and 61% of the SSI participants said they had avoided disclosing at least one type of information, with the most common reasons for nondisclosure not wanting to be judged or lectured, not wanting to hear how harmful a particular behavior is, and being embarrassed. In both groups, women, younger participants, and those who rated their own health as poor were more likely to admit they withheld information. Most withheld the fact that they disagreed with the doctor's recommendations or that they didn't understand the doctor's instructions. The study was published on November 30, 2018, in JAMA Network Open.

“Many respondents in these surveys intentionally withhold important information from their clinicians, and were most likely to do so when they disagreed with or misunderstood their clinician’s instructions,” concluded lead author Andrea Gurmankin Levy, PhD, MBe, of MXCC, and colleagues. “Patient failure to disclose medically relevant information to clinicians can undermine patient care or even lead to patient harm. A better understanding of how to increase patients’ comfort with reporting this information may improve the clinician-patient relationship and patient care.”

“An awful lot in medical care depends on the patient history, and we know we're not always getting the full story. Full disclosure puts the burden and responsibility on the patient, which may not be a practical way to solve this communication problem,” said Arthur Elstein, MD, a retired physician of the University of Illinois (Chicago, USA), in an accompanying commentary. “Instead, health care professionals should be aware of the nondisclosure issue and look for ways to uncover details in a technical way, such as an impersonal online survey before face-to-face appointments.”

Related Links:
Middlesex Community College
University of Utah
University of Iowa

Print article



view channel

Siemens to Acquire Varian Medical to Create Comprehensive Cancer Portfolio

Siemens Healthineers (Erlangen, Germany) has entered into an agreement to acquire Varian Medical Systems, Inc. (Palo Alto, CA, USA) that will lead to the creation of a global leader in healthcare with... Read more
Copyright © 2000-2020 Globetech Media. All rights reserved.