Discussion of risk pervades doctor-patient communication

BMJ 2002; 325 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.325.7363.548 (Published 07 September 2002) Cite this as: BMJ 2002;325:548
  1. Andrew F Smith, consultant anaesthetist (Andrew.Smith@l.bay-tr.nwest.nhs.uk)
  1. Royal Lancaster Infirmary, Lancaster LA1 4RP

    EDITOR—Edwards et al neatly summarised the state of current knowledge on communicating risk.1 I have three further points to add.

    Firstly, readers may be interested in the risk ladder we developed to display the risks associated with anaesthesia in comparison with some everyday risks (figure). 2 3

    Risk ladders for everyday and clinical risks. Reproduced with permission of Blackwell Scientific

    Secondly, I think that the authors either have chosen not to address or been unaware that communication about risk and safety takes place throughout a consultation and not simply when the …

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