Clinician-patient communication during the diagnostic workup: The ABIDE project

Leonie N. C. Visser, Marleen Kunneman, Laxsini Murugesu, Ingrid van Maurik, Marissa Zwan, Femke H. Bouwman, Jacqueline Schuur, Hilje A. Wind, Marjolijn S. J. Blaauw, J. Jolijn Kragt, Gerwin Roks, Leo Boelaarts, Annemieke C. Schipper, Niki Schooneboom, Philip Scheltens, Wiesje M. van der Flier, Ellen M. A. Smets

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction: We aimed to describe clinician-patient communication in the diagnostic process of memory clinics, specifically clinician behavior known to facilitate knowledgeable participation of patients during consultations. Methods: In this multicenter, observational study, we audio-recorded routine diagnostic consultations of 41 clinicians and 136 patients/caregivers at eight memory clinics. Patients/caregivers completed surveys after each audiotaped consultation. We used a study-specific coding scheme to categorize communication behavior. Results: Clinicians often provided information on (results of) diagnostic testing. They infrequently invited questions and/or checked understanding. Clinician behavior to involve patients in decision-making about diagnostic testing was limited. Of note, patients/caregivers rarely expressed their information or involvement preferences. Yet, approximately, one quarter of them would have liked to receive more information. Discussion: Involving patients more explicitly by means of shared decision-making could benefit the quality of care provided in memory clinics because it enables clinicians to attune the diagnostic workup to the individual patient's needs.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)520-528
JournalAlzheimer's and Dementia: Diagnosis, Assessment and Disease Monitoring
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Dementia
  • Diagnostic work-up
  • Doctor-patient communication
  • Patient engagement
  • Shared decision-making

Cite this