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Logo of jroyalcgpracBJGP at RCGPBJGP at PubMed CentralJ R Coll Gen Pract at PubMed CentralRCGP homepage
J R Coll Gen Pract. 1974 July; 24(144): 465–468.
PMCID: PMC2157488

Telling the patient


The general practitioners of 279 patients who died from malignant disease were asked whether they discussed the diagnosis and prognosis with the patients. Thirteen per cent did so. They were more likely to discuss with women than men, and social class patients 1 and 2 than classes 3, 4, and 5. They thought that notwithstanding whether or not the matter had been discussed nevertheless 46 per cent of the patients knew. The chief carers (usually relatives) of the patients thought that 54 per cent of the patients knew.

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Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • ASHER R. The management of advanced cancer. Proc R Soc Med. 1955 May;48(5):376–377. [PubMed]
  • FITTS WT, Jr, RAVDIN IS. What Philadelphia physicians tell patients with cancer. J Am Med Assoc. 1953 Nov 7;153(10):901–904. [PubMed]
  • KELLY WD, FRIESEN SR. Do cancer patients want to be told? Surgery. 1950 Jun;27(6):822–826. [PubMed]
  • Milton GW. The care of the dying. Med J Aust. 1972 Jul 22;2(4):177–182. [PubMed]
  • OKEN D. What to tell cancer patients. A study of medical attitudes. JAMA. 1961 Apr 1;175:1120–1128. [PubMed]
  • Robinson JA. The patient's right to know the truth. Proc R Soc Med. 1973 Jun;66(6):536–537. [PubMed]

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