Interviewing as Clinical Conversation

  • Kathleen A. Zoppi


Mrs. Dinah Washburn is a 42-year-old woman who has come to the office for the first time. She is experiencing severe abdominal pain, looks pale, and is sweating profusely. Alice, the fourth-year student on a family medicine rotation, is assigned to take her history and to complete a physical examination. She enters the room and begins the interview:

Alice: Hi, Mrs. Washburn. I’m Alice Tidwell, a fourth-year medical student, and I’ll be taking care of you today.

Mrs. Washburn: Hi. I really feel bad.

Alice: I can see that you’re in pain. Is there anything I can do to help you be more comfortable while I talk with you and examine you? I need to find out some basic information before we can give you any medication to help the pain.

Mrs. Washburn: Yeah, if I curl up with a pillow against my stomach it helps a little.

Alice: Then let me get a pillow for you before we begin …


Medical Student Sore Throat Social History Chief Resident Chief Concern 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kathleen A. Zoppi

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