Effective communication is an essential feature of the doctor—patient relationship and is most likely one of its most complex aspects. Each participant in an interaction both sends and receives messages at multiple levels and through multiple modalities simultaneously. Messages may be sent or received consciously, with awareness and intent, or unconsciously, with either one or both communicants unaware of the message but nevertheless having sent or received it. Messages can be revealing, that is, communicate an existing phenomenon, or be reflective, that is, communicate an interpretation of a phenomenon.1 Messages may be shared through style of dress, verbal or written language, manner and kind of movement, Organization of space, and use of time. An effective physician must accurately receive and interpret patient messages and ensure that each patient accurately receives and interprets the physician’s message.
KeywordsFacial Expression Consultation Room Closing Phase Skilled Physician Interview Situation
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- 1.Kanfer FH, Phillips JS. Learning Foundations of Behavior ther-apy. New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1970.Google Scholar
- 2.Kagan N. Interpersonal process recall: A Method of influencing human interaction. East Lansing, MI: Educational Publications Services, 1976.Google Scholar
- 3.Enelow AJ, Swisher SN. Interviewing and Patient Care. New York: Oxford University Press, 1972.Google Scholar
- 4.Rakel RE: Principles of family medicine. Philadelphia: Saunders, 1977.Google Scholar
- 5.Haggard E, Issacs KS. Micro-momentary facial expressions as indicators of ego mechanisms in psychotherapy. In: Gottschalk LA, Auerback AA, eds. Methods of research in psychotherapy. New York: Appleton-Century-Crofts, 1966.Google Scholar
- 6.Wilson FR. Micro-momentary facial expressions and psychologi-cal defense. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Michigan State University, 1976.Google Scholar
- 7.Johnson TM. Interpersonal skill in physical diagnosis. In: Burn-side J, ed. Physical diagnosis: An introduction to clinical medicine. Baltimore: William & Wilkins, 1981.Google Scholar
- 8.Older J. Touching is Healing. New York: Stein and Day, 1982.Google Scholar
- 9.Henley WE. A touch of the hand. NZ Med J 1977; 86: 100–102.Google Scholar
- 11.Balint M. The doctor, his patient, and his illness. New York: International Universities Press, 1972.Google Scholar