What You Should Know: Lies in the Patient-Doctor Relationship

What You Should Know is an ongoing series covering a range of informational topics relevant to current and future healthcare professionals.
It happens to every medical student sooner or later – the realization that their patient has lied to them. Especially for students, who are just beginning to gain clinical experience, this realization can come as a shock. A sense of betrayal, anger or even the desire for retribution can set in, all of which can be damaging to the doctor-patient relationship.
These emotions aside, it might help student doctors dealing with the nature of this reality to understand where deception enters into the therapeutic relationship – as well as how and why people lie in a clinical setting and what the doctor can do about it.

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