Diabetes Health in the News Podcast: Learning to Communicate Symptoms

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Dr. John Ely recently presented information supporting his theory that patients need to be taught how to communicate their symptoms to doctors better. Dr. Ely is a retired family physician from the University of Iowa, and after recently being a patient himself, he started to think about the characteristics of a good patient. In his opinion, using the eight characteristics of a symptom would be a good way for patients to explain what they are feeling to physicians.

Dr. Ely notes that medical students are taught eight characteristics of a symptom. Some of these include the “quality” of the symptom and what a person was doing when they first experienced the symptom. He believes that if patients were taught how to communicate these eight characteristics, doctors would have an easier time diagnosing a medical problem.

These findings were presented at the Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine annual meeting held in September 2015.


Editors Note: To learn more about the eight characteristics of a symptom, look for the full article next week on December 2nd! 

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