Introduction: Little is known about patients' perspectives on the amount of information they receive prior to diagnostic gastrointestinal endoscopies. Our unit's policy for obtaining consent consists of initially posting an information leaflet to the patient followed by subsequent explanation of the procedure on arrival for the test. The consent form is signed by the patient immediately prior to the test.
Methods: A questionnaire survey was conducted to assess patient perception and satisfaction with the amount of information received before diagnostic endoscopy.
Results: The information was obtained from 127 of the 175 questionnaires that were distributed. Whereas 97% had read the information leaflet, only 52% had read the consent form before signing it. 64/127(51%) felt dissatisfied because they would have wanted more information while 3% were dissatisfied because they would have liked less information relating to one or more aspects of the test. Dissatisfaction was higher in patients who had not read the consent form (p < 0.001) and those with some formal education (p = 0.01).
Conclusions: Patients who did not read the consent form were more dissatisfied. Strategies to improve the rate of reading this document may increase patient satisfaction.
Copyright 2002 S. Karger AG, Basel