Is it me? The impact of patient-physician interactions on lupus patients’ psychological wellbeing, cognitions, and healthcare-seeking behaviour

Sloan, Melanie, Naughton, Felix, Harwood, Rupert, Lever, Elliott, D’cruz, David, Sutton, Stephen, Walia, Chanpreet, Howard, Paul and Gordon, Caroline (2020) Is it me? The impact of patient-physician interactions on lupus patients’ psychological wellbeing, cognitions, and healthcare-seeking behaviour. Rheumatology Advances in Practice, 4 (2). ISSN 2514-1775

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Abstract

Objective To explore the impact of patient-physician interactions, pre- and post-diagnosis, on lupus and undifferentiated connective tissue disease (UCTD) patients’ psychological well-being, cognitions and healthcare-seeking behaviour. Methods Participants were purposively sampled from the 233 responses to a survey on patient experiences of medical support. Twenty-one semi-structured interviews were conducted and themes generated using thematic analysis. Results The study identified six principal themes: 1. The impact of the diagnostic journey; 2. The influence of key physician(s) on patient trust and security, with most participants reporting at least one positive medical relationship; 3. Disparities in patient-physician priorities, with patients desiring more support with Quality of Life (QoL) concerns; 4. Persisting insecurity and distrust, which was prevalent, and largely influenced by previous and anticipated disproportionate (often perceived as dismissive) physician responses to symptoms, and experiences of widespread inadequate physician knowledge of systemic autoimmune diseases; 5. Changes to healthcare-seeking behaviours, such as curtailing help-seeking or under-reporting symptoms; and 6. Empowerment, including shared medical decision making and knowledge acquisition, which can mitigate insecurity and improve care. Conclusion Negative medical interactions pre- and post- diagnosis can cause a loss of self-confidence and a loss of confidence and trust in the medical profession. This insecurity may persist even in subsequent positive medical relationships and should be addressed. Key physicians implementing empowering and security-inducing strategies, including being available in times of health crises and validating patient- reported symptoms, may lead to more trusting medical relationships and positive healthcare-seeking behaviour.

Item Type: Article
Related URLs:
Depositing User: LivePure Connector
Date Deposited: 18 Aug 2020 23:56
Last Modified: 24 Sep 2020 00:04
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/76482
DOI: 10.1093/rap/rkaa037

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