The objective of this study was to explore the extent to which patients and physicians desire patient participation in medical decision making. The cross-sectional pilot study involved 92 patients with coronary artery disease (CAD) and 50 physicians involved in treating patients with CAD. Desire to participate in making the decision between treatment options for CAD and factors that influence the decision were assessed. Physicians prefer to participate in shared decision making more often than do the patients (P = .016). When faced with clinical scenarios requiring a decision to be made between percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty and coronary artery bypass graft, patients and physicians tended to defer to one another to make the decision. Multinomial logistic regression models showed that the overriding factor influencing patient decision making was the physician's opinion (P < .0001) and the patient's preference was the overriding factor influencing physician decision making (P < .0001). Because patients tend to defer to physicians when making medical decisions, it is incumbent upon the physician to assure that the physician-patient dialogue reflects important information about the procedures (coronary artery bypass graft and percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty) and that preferences are acknowledged. This may impact greatly on achieving satisfactory health outcomes and patient satisfaction.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Health Policy