How do I know what a patient really wants?  I don’t.  Not at first.  Often times they have a better idea what they don’t want.  They may know what they want treatment to do for them but they may not know what treatment will actually do it or what treatment would be optimal.  If the doctor doesn't ask, then the desired result may not be stated and can only be guessed.  This lack of clarity sometimes creates a fuzzy cloud of confusion regarding what the outcome of treatment should be. The doctor and patient can have very different expectations. That can lead to an unhappy patient and doctor.  Allowing a patient to clarify before any treatment is performed is the key.  Listening and asking appropriate questions can lead to answers regarding the desired outcome.  What does that take?  Curiosity, empathy, and respect for the patient’s wishes. 


Photograph by Dave Hutt, www.dmddigitalphoto.com

3/11/2013 07:34:13 am

Dr. Carsten is so right! Even many of my colleagues, psychotherapists who are supposed to be curious and empathic, fail at both of those repeatedly, and wonder why their practices are not full.

What shines through about Dr. Carsten is the part of him that clearly takes the time to think about his patients as individuals, and then tailor his approach based on each patient as an "N" of one, so to speak.. Those are skills he has developed in spades.

It is very refreshing to know to know another professional who has the whole package--the training, the experience, the heart, and the passion!

Keep it going, Dr. Dave!


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