Listening to the Patient

Paul C. Mohl, Robert J. Ursano

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Despite rapid advances in our understanding of the brain, listening remains the critical skill for the effective practice of clinical psychiatry. Indeed, we are even beginning to understand the neurobiological underpinnings of effective empathy and listening. This chapter describes this unique process of clinical listening and empathy, emphasizing potential impediments, attention to words and their subtle meanings, and the importance of theoretical perspectives in effective listening. Attention is paid to different linguistic effects, cultural variations, and a variety of special circumstances.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationPsychiatry: Third Edition
PublisherJohn Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Number of pages19
ISBN (Print)9780470065716
Publication statusPublished - Aug 8 2008



  • Culture
  • Empathy
  • Interview
  • Listening
  • Narrative
  • Theory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Mohl, P. C., & Ursano, R. J. (2008). Listening to the Patient. In Psychiatry: Third Edition (Vol. 1, pp. 1-19). John Wiley & Sons, Ltd..