narrative medicine

Medicine that uses the story of a patient's illness combined with traditional medical practices as a way of understanding, diagnosing, and treating the illness.
Example Citations:
Narrative medicine imports terms from literature to describe the doctor-patient relationship. In describing his backache, Charon said, the Dominican man was actually telling an "illness narrative," which can be interpreted just like a literary text: by examining the presentation of character, the structure of the tale and the plot of the disease. Regardless of the outcome — the diagnosis or treatment ... — what is central is the telling and receiving of the tale.
— Melanie Thernstrom, "The Writing Cure," The New York Times, April 18, 2004
The 45-year-old woman writhing in pain from an abdominal illness groans and snaps irritably at the medical student who is examining her. Her grimaces and grumbling are not articulate, but to a careful listener like Stephen Lee-Kong, a fourth-year medical student at Columbia University, they are part of a narrative that will explain what's wrong with her.
Teaching students how to "read" patients and listen as their stories unfold are goals of an innovative program here in what has become known as "narrative medicine."
— Katherine S. Mangan, "Behind Every Symptom, a Story," The Chronicle of Higher Education, February 13, 2004,
Earliest Citation:
Both Drs. Brody and Kleinman seem to agree that the remedy for our chronic inattention to the patient is a new emphasis in both teaching and practice in ''medical humanities.'' To those who believe that medical humanities are to the humanities as military music is to music, Dr. Brody's eloquent book presents a formidable challenge. He fully displays the virtues of his new discipline as he shows us how literary criticism and social sciences can be applied to the tales of illness that doctors and patients tell one other.
— Gerald Weissmann, "Narrative medicine," The New York Times, July 17, 1988
Related Words: Categories:

New words. 2013.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Narrative medicine — connotes a medicine practiced with narrative competence and marked with an understanding of the highly complex narrative situations among doctors, patients, colleagues, and the public. Contents 1 History 2 Obstacles 3 References …   Wikipedia

  • Medicine — aging ear altruistic donor andrologist antigerm ape diet apitherapy baggage malaria bed blocker …   New words

  • Narrative art — is art that tells a story, either as a moment in an ongoing story or as a sequence of events unfolding over time. Some of the earliest evidence of human art suggests that people told stories with pictures. However, without some knowledge of the… …   Wikipedia

  • Narrative Matters — is the peer reviewed, personal essay section of the health policy journal Health Affairs. It publishes literary nonfiction – based on firsthand encounters – that carry a policy message. These “policy narratives” link a story or anecdote to the… …   Wikipedia

  • Narrative of the abduction phenomenon — The narrative of the abduction phenomenon is an alleged core of similarity in contents and chronology underlying various claims of forced temporary abduction of humans by apparently otherworldly beings. Proponents of the abduction phenomenon… …   Wikipedia

  • Narrative — A narrative is a constructive format (as a work of speech, writing, song, film, television, video games, photography or theatre) that describes a sequence of non fictional or fictional events. The word derives from the Latin verb narrare, to… …   Wikipedia

  • Narrative journalism — Journalism News · Writing style Ethics · Objectivity Values · …   Wikipedia

  • Humanistic medicine — or values based medicine is an interdisciplinary field in the practice of clinical care, aimed at addressing the problems of contemporary health care. The fundamental principles of humanistic medicine are open communication, mutual respect, and… …   Wikipedia

  • slow medicine — n. Medical care that focuses on the patient and on giving comfort and palliative care rather than on technology and aggressive treatments. Example Citations: Edie Gieg, 85, strides ahead of people half her age and plays a fast paced game of… …   New words

  • beeper medicine — n. The practice of medicine by responding primarily to pages and other emergency calls. Example Citation: With so many timesaving devices, where does all the time go? In the era of the nanosecond, express lines in fast food restaurants, speed… …   New words

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.