HSR&D Citation Abstract
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Do patient perceptions of provider communication relate to experiences of physical pain?
Ruben MA, Meterko M, Bokhour BG. Do patient perceptions of provider communication relate to experiences of physical pain?. Patient education and counseling. 2018 Feb 1; 101(2):209-213.
Patient-provider communication is an important component of the medical interaction yet little research has examined the relationships between perceptions of communication and health outcomes or the mechanisms by which communication may ameliorate the pain experience. This is the first study to examine the relationships between patients' perceptions of provider communication, pain intensity and self-efficacy for managing chronic disease.
The total sample contained 1027 (85.8% male) Veteran patients. Patients responded to surveys about their experiences and outcomes of care, including measures of patient-provider communication, self-efficacy and pain outcomes including pain intensity and pain interference.
Results showed more positive perceptions of provider communication were related to lower levels of pain intensity and pain interference and that this relationship was significantly mediated by higher levels of self-efficacy for managing chronic disease.
More positive provider communication was related to higher levels of self-efficacy, which in turn was related to lower levels of pain intensity and pain interference. Findings suggest that providers may be able to elicit higher levels of self-efficacy in their patients by providing patient-centered communication, which in turn will reduce pain intensity and interference in their patient's lives.