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Communication gaps about OFF periods between physicians and patients with Parkinson’s disease: a patient–physician dialogue analysis

Authors Levit AV, Zebendon C, Walter L, O’Donnell P, Marras C

Received 27 September 2018

Accepted for publication 21 February 2019

Published 30 April 2019 Volume 2019:9 Pages 3—8


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Peter Hedera

Anna V Levit,1 Cheryl Zebendon,1 Lauren Walter,2 Patricia O’Donnell,2 Connie Marras3

1Acorda Therapeutics, Inc., Ardsley, NY, USA; 2Verilogue, Inc., Horsham, PA, USA; 3The Edmond J Safra Program in Parkinson’s Research, University Health Network, Toronto Western Hospital, Toronto, ON, Canada

Background: As Parkinson’s disease (PD) progresses, patients may experience the return of PD symptoms (OFF periods) despite treatment. Recognizing and treating OFF periods requires effective communication between physicians and patients.
Methods: A linguistic analysis investigated communication gaps between patients and physicians using a database containing dialogues recorded during regular office visits. Follow-up interviews were conducted with selected physicians, patients, and caregivers.
Results: Four areas were identified showing communication gaps between patients and physicians: differences in language; patient knowledge about OFF periods; differences in approach to describing OFF periods; and attitude toward management of OFF periods.
Conclusion: Closing communication gaps may improve overall PD management.

Keywords: Parkinson’s disease, communication, motor fluctuations, clinical practice, OFF period

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