Patient preferences in orthopaedic conditions

What doctors think is important don´t always align with what patients think is important. I think this is a growing aspect in medicine and very important foundation for the shared decision making. Shapira et al. published an interesting study in the Medical Decision Making journal titled: “When Is a Harm a Harm? Discordance between Patient and Medical Experts’ Evaluation of Lung Cancer Screening Attributes“.

We need similar research in orthopaedics. We need to conduct more research on the preferences our patients have. Screening related decrease in the mortality and possible overdiagnosis is not something which is very relevant in orthopaedics but we have lots of other preference-based choices. Faster recovery or better functional outcome versus higher risk of complications are choices we face everyday if we implement shared-decision making in our daily practice. When SDM is becoming more common we also need information what patients truly value in the tretment decisions.

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