Patient compliance is, unfortunately, similar to "the dying patient" in terms of overkill in the literature. Both areas are characterized by a great deal of talk and writing, with a minimum of news ideas, new insights, or effective strategies for ameliorating the situation.

   I believe that this book differs from what is all too available in the literature in providing some new insights and new approaches to the overall problem of communication between physician and patient (which ought to be a two-way street). The individuals responsible for the papers come from a variety of disciplines, and reflect their specific orientations. The result is a better rounded treatment of the subject than is available anywhere else, to my knowledge.

   In our discussion of these problems, it is perhaps imporant not to lose track of the difference, between education and medical care. It is my strong belief that most patients want to get well, or to prevent illness, rather than to become educated about disease and its consequences. This was well put many centuries ago by Plato in his Dialogues: "...For of this you may be very sure, that if one of those empirical physicians, who practice medicine without science, were to come upon the gentlmean physician talking to his gentleman patient, and using the language almost of philosophy--beginning at the beginning of the diease, and discoursing about the whole nature of the body, he would burst into a hearty laugh--he would say what most of those who are called doctors always have at their tongue's end: foolish fellow, he would say, you are not healing the sick man, but you are educating him; and he does not want to be made a doctor, but to get well."    --Louis Lasagna


Patient Compliance (Principles and techniques of human research and therapeutics

  • Edited by Louis Lasagna MD. Collectible vintage book. xxv + 162 pp. Like new condition. Hardcover. ISBN 0-87993-081-0. $15.00 Published in 1976