As the time for the Symposium draws near we are all filled with a sense of excitement. We strive to build upon the momentum gained in prior years and hope that we meet the expectations of both new and seasoned Symposium attendees. This year we will have a new roundtable composed of patients and healthcare providers. In this session I hope that we can identify the strengths that allow those with mesothelioma to continue to lead full and rewarding lives. What does it take to get from the early days of diagnosis to becoming a whole and healthy person who also happens to carry the diagnosis of mesothelioma? Knowing that you have an incurable disease, do you hope for the best and prepare for the worst? Is that even possible? I hope to explore these questions with patients. I also wish to open a dialogue about what it takes to be on the other end of the exam table, as a provider, charged with delivering the news, and then providing hope with reality. It is a fine balance and the providers we have chosen to partake in this discussion are known for their compassion and honesty. I hope that by exploring the patient and provider experience we can come away with better communication skills and a better understanding of what it takes to fill either set of shoes.Physicians’ decision-making style and psychosocial outcomes among cancer survivors. Arora NK, Weaver KE, Clayman ML, Oakley-Girvan I, Potosky AL. Patient Educ Couns. 2009 Dec;77(3):404-12. Epub 2009 Nov 4.
Patient-centered communication and prognosis discussions with cancer patients. Shields CG, Coker CJ, Poulsen SS, Doyle JM, Fiscella K, Epstein RM, Griggs JJ. Patient Educ Couns. 2009 Dec;77(3):437-42. Epub 2009 Oct 9.
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Which patients improve: characteristics increasing sensitivity to a supportive patient-practitioner relationship. Conboy LA, Macklin E, Kelley J, Kokkotou E, Lembo A, Kaptchuk T. Soc Sci Med. 2010 Feb;70(3):479-84. Epub 2009 Nov 10
Bereavement: addressing challenges faced by advanced cancer patients, their caregivers, and their physicians. Kutner JS, Kilbourn KM. Prim Care. 2009 Dec;36(4):825-44. Review.