Dr. David B. Adams – Psychological Blog

Psychology of Illness, Pain, Anxiety and Depression

The Question of Motivation

Among other information you must have regarding a patient’s psychological preparedness for surgery are

_ What do they know (in depth) about the procedure and its best and worst case outcomes?

_ Are they, at any level, prepared for a neutral or negative outcome?

_ How comfortable are they with whom, how and where this procedure will take place?

_ Do they know anyone (close friend or relative) who has benefited from the procedure?

_ Is the procedure mandatory or merely an possible option and does the patient fully understand that?

_ What are the patient_s plans after a positive outcome_what are the backup plans if the outcome is suboptimal?

_ What other clinical alternatives have been explained to the patient?

_ Does the patient have an adequate support system, but more importantly, do members of that support system understand the proposed procedure.

I would estimate that greater than 80% of patients whom I see pre-surgically do not understand what is being proposed despite repeated attempts to education them.

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