The Messiness of Medical Decision Making in Advanced Illness: A Podcast with James Tulsky

Anyone who cares for individuals with serious illness must live in a messy space where tough conversations about treatment decisions are common and complicated. On this podcast, GeriPal talks with James Tulsky about living in this messy space of medical decision making and the challenges that come with communication around advanced treatment decisions.

James discusses the path to the work that he has done, including early studies he did that included audio recording DNR discussions between physicians and patients, to his most recent study looking at the “Triadic agreement about advanced cancer treatment decisions.” In this last study, James’ group surveyed 70 triads of patients, caregivers, and their oncologists shortly after making a cancer treatment decision and found that only 40% of triads completely agreed on the goal of treatment. In all the remaining cases, at least one member of the triad disagreed about the goal of treatment.

Links: GeriPal (11/2021)