Producing healthcare video content around challenging topics requires a sensitive approach. People dealing with a new diagnosis can feel shock, upset and fear and often seek support and information not only from their specialist, but also from a range of online sources.
When we were approached by Ipsen Australia to film five patient stories for Acromunity, a website providing help with people living with Acromegaly, we knew it would require a thoughtful perspective. Acromegaly is a rare medical condition caused by too much growth hormone in the body. The condition develops slowly and over time produces symptoms and signs such as enlarged hands and feet, prominent facial features and an enlarged jaw.
Our five patients were selected from Sydney, Brisbane and Hobart. In this video, we meet Dave and hear his story. Dave’s road to diagnosis began when he was on holiday in Hong Kong. While out shopping with his wife, a stranger appeared out of the crowd and urged him to see a doctor as his hands were “too big”. This eventually led Dave to a diagnosis of acromegaly and subsequent surgery.
We spent time getting to know Dave to ensure there was a good level of familiarity and trust between us before the interview. This resulted in him feeling comfortable enough to tell his story (instead of ‘giving an interview’), and he openly shares his experiences with diagnosis, treatment and surgery.
Patient stories deliver difficult information to a vulnerable audience in a non-confrontational way. Medical jargon can be overwhelming so anecdotal advice can be extremely powerful for a newly diagnosed individual. Dave’s down-to-earth manner and surgery recommendations may help lessen the fear for patients taking up healthcare recommendations.
Because video is such an immediate medium, it can reach patients that might feel overwhelmed by written medical information as well as lifting the impact of your delivery by converting dry, written materials into relatable visual content.