Introductionclinical Empathy In Medicine

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IntroductionClinical empathy is an essential element of quality care and is associated with improved patient satisfaction, adherence to treatment, and fewer malpractice complaints. It has been suggested that in contrast to models of “detached concern,” physicians who attempt to understand what their patient is feeling and communicate their concern achieve a number of valuable outcomes for their patients and for themselves . Empathy in medicine is challenging though, because doctors are dealing with the most emotionally distressing situations–illness, dying, suffering in every form–and such situations would normally make an empathic person anxious, perhaps too anxious to be helpful . This painful reality may take its toll on these individuals…show more content…
These systems are not limited to the cortex, but are primarily associated with the brainstem, subcortical nuclei, autonomic nervous system, hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, and endocrine systems that regulate bodily states, emotion, and reactivity . Empirical research examining the components of clinical empathy is imperative in order to understand why some studies have shown that empathy declines during medical school and residency , . Another important reason for conducting research on the underlying factors that contribute to clinical empathy and potential associated emotional dysfunctions among health-care professionals is the development of educational intervention for medical students , . The goal of the current study sought to determine which aspects of empathy are associated with positive or negative outcome (well-being and burnout respectively) in practicing physicians. Validated self-report instruments were used to assess emotional awareness, empathic concern, personal distress, prosocial behavior, burnout, and
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