Interpreting Health Benefits and Risks (with Erik Rifkin)

Interpreting Health Benefits and Risks (with Erik Rifkin)
A Practical Guide to Facilitate Doctor-Patient Communication 2015th Edition.

This timely guide to communication in patient-centered medicine argues for greater clarity in explaining health risks versus benefits of an array of screening tests, procedures, and drug regimens.


It reviews the growing trend toward patients' involvement in their own care, particularly in terms of chronic conditions, and details approaches physicians can use to prepare patients (and themselves) for collaborative decision-making based on informed choices and clear, meaningful knowledge.


Chapters apply this lens to a wide range of common interventions as contentious as estrogen replacement therapy and antibiotics, and as widely prescribed as the daily aspirin and the annual physical.


With this goal in mind, the authors also introduce an innovative decision-making tool that translates risks and benefits into a clear graphic format for fewer chances of miscommunication or misunderstanding.

Among the topics covered:

  • Involving the patient in decision making.

  • Towards a universal decision aid.

  • BRCT: the Benefit/Risk Characterization Theater.

  • Breast Cancer Screening—Mammograms.

  • Prostate Cancer Screening.

  • Colon cancer screening with colonoscopy.

  • Screening for and treating dementia.

  • Statins, cholesterol, and coronary heart disease.


Physicians in family and internal medicine will find Interpreting Health Benefits and Risks: A Practical Guide to Facilitate Doctor- Patient Communication a valuable resource for communicating with patients and new possibilities for working toward their better health and health education.

“Shared decision making, informed medical decision making, and evidence based medicine are all clarion calls for a patient-physician dialogue that will enlighten health care in the 21st Century. But calling for such and engaging in such are not the same. Both patients and doctors must first learn how to communicate at a level that makes the patient the captain of the ship, the doctor the navigator. Interpreting Health Benefits offers such a language.”

Nortin Hadler, MD, MACP, FACOEM.  Professor of Medicine, University of North Carolina Chapel Hill.  Author of Rethinking Aging and The Last Well Person.


Rifkin and Lazris Introduction Part 1

Sinusitis and Bronchitis

Rifkin and Lazris Introduction Part 2

Researchers Paint A Picture Of Health Benefits And Risks-

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