Physician gender and hormone replacement therapy discussion

Journal of Women's Health & Gender-based Medicine
S HustonR H Rubin


Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is a major issue confronting millions of women today, and general internal medicine and family practice physicians are an important source of information and counseling on this issue. Previous studies have suggested that HRT discussion and prescribing are more frequent with female than with male physicians, but others have suggested age and practice setting may be the reason for observed differences. We attempted to determine if physician gender influenced HRT discussion frequency between physicians and their patients using cross-sectional, secondary analysis of data collected at general internal medicine and family practice clinics at the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center. Twenty-seven family practice and internal medicine resident physicians (15 female, 12 male) participated. There were 127 female patients age 45 and older. Audio-taped observations of patient-physician visits collected during 1995 for a study on patient-physician communication and patient satisfaction were used. There was less frequent discussion with female than male physicians (OR = 0.42, p = 0.0014). HRT was discussed during 51 visits. Patients initiated HRT discussion in 39.2% of visits in which it was discu...Continue Reading


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