How to understand medical decisions

The aim of this website is to help patients and professionals to share clinical reasoning more easily, based on concepts also set out in the Oxford Handbook of Clinical Diagnosis. It also provides a 'key' to unlock details in medical records.

Understanding Medical Decisions

Background:

Next steps:

Before trying to understand shared decisions, giving informed consent and to follow the reasoning in medical records, you need to answer three questions first:

 

  1. What's the currently agreed plan (e.g. a list of the decisions and actions being taken)?

 

  2. For each item (e.g. a medication) in the plan, what is the most probable diagnosis?

 

  3. For each diagnosis, and for marking its progress, which symptoms, examination findings, test results, aims and preferences were and are being used?

 

Without this basic information, you will not be able to progress to understanding a record and you will not be able to explain things clearly to others to allow continuity of care.

 

Any health professional involved in the care should know the answers (but first tap here).

 

You can write out the answers as shown in 'next steps' here =>'.

 

For a better understanding, tap on  'More questions and 'Deeper questions' here=>.  

 

To look up terms in NHS Choices, tap here.

 

© Huw Llewelyn 2016