When patients see a cancer doctor for the first time, they don’t remember everything the doctor tells them. In fact, both older patients and younger ones remembered about half what they heard about their diagnoses, treatment, chances for cure, and life expectancy.
Patients over 65 only remembered less than younger ones in those situations where visits were longer and more information was discussed.
Prognosis did make a difference. Patients with poorer prognosis recalled less, no matter what age they were. And, despite whether the expected cancer outcomes were good or not, the more a doctor talked about prognosis, the less patients remembered. Read the rest of this entry »