The Overtalkative Patient

The overtalkative patient presents a challenge to the novice interviewer. These patients dominate the interview;the interviewer can hardly get a word in. Every question gets a long answer. Even the answers to ''yes-no'' questions seem endless. There is usually an aggressive quality to this patient's communications. Every answer is overdetailed. A courteous interruption followed by another direct question helps focus on the subject of the interview. The use of open-ended questions, facilitations, or silence is to be avoided because these techniques encourage such a patient to continue speaking. If all else fails, the interviewer should try to relax and accept the problem.

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