What are Differences between Conventional and Alternative Medical Care?

A new study recently compared patient-physician relationships and relief of symptoms between complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) and conventional primary care (COM). The study was part of a Swiss evaluation of complementary and alternative medicine.

Researchers looked at more than 6,000 patients. The study included patients of 77 non-certified CAM physicians and of 71 conventional physicians. The patients completed a questionnaire wich asked questions about symptom relief, patient satisfaction, and quality of patient-physician interaction.

According to Biomed Central:

“CAM physicians treated significantly more patients with chronic conditions than COM physicians. CAM Patients had significant higher healing expectations than COM patients. General patient satisfaction was significantly higher in CAM patients ... The quality of patient-physician communication was rated significantly better in CAM patients.”

The study concluded that more effective communication patterns by complementary and alternative medicine could play an important role in allowing patients to maintain more positive outcome expectations.

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