ISSN 1308-8734 | E-ISSN 1308-8742
Original Article
Problems in Communications with Patients in General Surgery Outpatient Practice
1 Department of General Surgery, Kocaeli University Faculty of Medicine, Kocaeli, Turkey  
2 Department of Family Medicine, Ankara Training and Research Hospital, Ankara, Turkey  
3 Department of General Surgery, Gazi University Faculty of Medicine, Ankara, Turkey  
Eurasian J Med 2015; 47: 184-189
DOI: 10.5152/eurasianjmed.2015.65
Key Words: Communication skills, surgery, education

Objective: Communication between the patient and physician is central to medical care. However communication skills in Turkey haven’t been gained so much concern. This situation effect the national quality of health care. Here, we tried to perform some basic communication skills and to find the problems with the possible solution suggestions.


Materials and Methods: The study was conducted for a month in general surgery outpatient department located in the slum part of Ankara with low socio-economic population. Basic communication skills were performed. The age, sex, education levels of the patients were obtained. Total symptom expression and interview time were recorded. Previous medical histories were asked. Interruptions including telephone, door knocking were noted. The questions of the patients at the end of the interview classified as hospital setting, nutrition and treatment.


Results: Total 410 interviews were analysed. Mean symptom expression and interview times were 22.9 sec and 7.05 min, respectively. Educated patients, males and young patients expressed symptoms longer than the others (p<0.05). There were 174 interruptions in which total interview time signifantly increased than the non interrupted ones (p<0.05). Final questions about hospital setting were signifantly higher in illiterate patients than the educated ones (p<0.05). Awareness of medical history is higher in educated and young patients.


Conclusion: Basic communications skills can be performed whether in rural regions. Much more concern should be given to the education of communication skills. The obstacles in communication in medicine are low education levels, and unorganised health system.

Key Words
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