It takes two to tango

A dyadic approach to understanding the medication dialogue in patient-provider relationships

Antoinette Schoenthaler, Melissa Basile, Tessa West, Adina Kalet

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Objective: To describe typologies of dyadic communication exchanges between primary care providers and their hypertensive patients about prescribed antihypertensive medications. Methods: Qualitative analysis of 94 audiotaped patient-provider encounters, using grounded theory methodology. Results: Four types of dyadic exchanges were identified: Interactive (53% of interactions), divergent-traditional (24% of interactions), convergent-traditional (17% of interactions) and disconnected (6% of interactions). In the interactive and convergent-traditional types, providers adopted a patient-centered approach and used communication behaviors to engage patients in the relationship. Patients in these interactions adopted either an active role in the visit (interactive), or a passive role (convergent-traditional). The divergent-traditional type was characterized by provider verbal dominance, which inhibited patients’ ability to ask questions, seek information, or check understanding of information. In the disconnected types, providers used mainly closed-ended questions and terse directives to gather and convey information, which was often disregarded by patients who instead diverted the conversation to psychosocial issues. Conclusions: This study identified interdependent patient-provider communication styles that can either facilitate or hinder discussions about prescribed medications. Practice implications: Examining the processes that underlie dyadic communication in patient-provider interactions is an essential first step to developing interventions that can improve the patient-provider relationship and patient health behaviors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalPatient Education and Counseling
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2018

Fingerprint

Communication
Aptitude
Health Behavior
Antihypertensive Agents
Primary Health Care

Keywords

  • Dyadic communication
  • Patient-provider communication
  • Qualitative analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

It takes two to tango : A dyadic approach to understanding the medication dialogue in patient-provider relationships. / Schoenthaler, Antoinette; Basile, Melissa; West, Tessa; Kalet, Adina.

In: Patient Education and Counseling, 01.01.2018.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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