Opening clinical encounters in an adult MSK setting.

(Chester, Robinson, & Roberts, 2014)

Aim: This study aims to identify the phrasing preferred by physiotherapists when opening clinical encounters in an adult musculoskeletal outpatient setting.

Methods: Cross-sectional observational study (Audio record of 15 clinicians’ interaction with 42 LBP patients in first and follow up appointments) + an electronic survey with ranking top five and or add their favourite.

Results: Clinicians seems to favour open questions. In the present study, physiotherapists favoured the question: “Do you just want to tell me a little bit about [your problem presentation] first of all?” which is a problem-focused symptom query and is both a question and an invitation.

Limitations: Small & selected sample, low response-rate, verbal communication only.

In practice: Use an open question to give opportunity to express what is important for themselves. Use “first of all” to express that discussion can go further. Mention a topic to gather information with a focus whilst allowing expression.

Think about pré-Key-Question too: Greetings, introduction of name and role, ask for preferred name, explain what will come, and general (social) questions : finding office, weather etc …

Chester, E. C., Robinson, N. C., & Roberts, L. C. (2014). Opening clinical encounters in an adult musculoskeletal setting. Manual Therapy, 19(4), 306–310.

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