Only $35.99/year

Pitt Mind and Medicine Final Exam Questions

Terms in this set (16)

- Empathy = the ability to understand and share the feelings of another.
o Some factors that influence whether one has an empathetic reaction to another person are gender, age, and roles played in family origin.
- A practitioner's level of empathy over the course of medical training as an intern decreases.
- I do find this problematic because empathy plays a crucial role in the treatment of patients. Empathy allows the physician to form connections with the patient and understand the circumstances at which the patient is facing.
o A lack of empathy decreases the effectiveness of patient-provider interactions and can implement greater biases when physicians are interacting with members of other social categories.
o The presence of empathy promotes partnership building that can improve the effectiveness of patient-provider interactions by reframing the interaction as one between collaborating equals, rather than between one high-status person, the provide, and one low-status person, the patient. Empathy also has both cognitive and affective components that allow for more expression of emotions and the ability to broaden perspectives.

Empathy was discussed in Burgess' 2007 paper which focused on reducing implicit biases in healthcare. Two factors that influence empathetic reactions are perspective taking and affective empathy. Perspective taking, which puts the provider in the patient's shoes, leads to affective empathy. This also works vice versa. Affective empathy facilitates adopting the other's perspective. Over the course of medical training and their career empathy tend to decline. This is problematic. According to Burgess' research, greater empathy leads to increased patient satisfaction, adherence, self-efficacy, perceptions of control, less emotional distress, and better outcomes. Also, increased empathy leads to a better connection between provider-patient. You are going to form a better relationship with someone who is able to think of the world from a view other than their own.
- Kendler's criteria for determining whether there are "genes for" various phenotypic traits, including mental illnesses are strength, causal confidence, generalizability, specificity, manipulability, proximity, and generativity.
o Strength reflects the magnitude of the association between the explanatory variable and disease risk. This concept is captured by a range of effect size statistics used in biomedicine such as an odds ration but also percent of variance explained, correlation coefficient.
o Generalizability reflects the degree to which an explanation applies across a wide range of differing background conditions. A highly generalizability risk factor will increase risk of illness in all environments, that is its effects are independent of other background factors.
§ By contrast, the impact of a risk factor with low generalizability will be highly dependent on the particular constellation of background factors.
o Specificity refers to the degree to which the explanation applies only to the disorder under consideration versus other disorders. A cause C is specific if it causes some disorder X but not other disorders Y and Z. Given these criteria it is likely that there are genes for such illnesses as major depression and schizophrenia.
- For major depression there are numerous upstream causes at different levels, but they all pass through a single bottleneck or causal node, in this case the bottle neck could be used to define the disorder. If we can intervene on the bottleneck that might be an effective treatment.