Listening to Women's Narratives of Breast Cancer Treatment: A Feminist Approach to Patient Satisfaction With Physician-Patient Communication

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Taylor & Francis


Traditional health communication research often has ignored sex and gender and has employed a quantitative biomedical perspective to predict behavior. In contrast, this study analyzed women's narratives of their breast cancer treatment to uncover conceptualizations of patient satisfaction with physician-patient communication. In their unfolding (nonlinear) narratives, patients viewed satisfaction as a negotiation process with physicians in which themes of respect, caring, and reassurance of expertise were prominent. Two root themes (dialogic approach to power and contextualization) acted as underlying dynamics or tensions throughout their narratives. Patients' ways of knowing and preferences for feminine communication styles influenced perceptions of physician-patient communication satisfaction.