Mastering the Medical Consultation

A Systemic, Solution-Oriented Process

by Bruno Kissling and Peter Ryser, translated by Joseph A. Smith




Modern medicine and healthcare systems are in crisis.  In the last fifty years, medicine has gained deep, scientific insights into the biological basis of health and disease, and while this has led to many successes, it has brought about a dramatic change of medical focus.  The patient is seen as a carrier of disease rather than as a person with a unique experience of the effects of disease or illness.  This book seeks to correct that, but showing how a person-centred medical consultation might overcome this crisis of modern medicine.   

The systemic, solution-oriented approach, outlined here in this new title, is good for both the patient and the doctor, and is a counter-model to doctor’s consultations that can seem automated and impersonal.  

In a systemic, solution-oriented consultation, doctor and patient approach the symptom or problem  and the patient’s solutions. With active listening and a doctor who can ask the right questions, they create a common reality as a starting point for a targeted therapeutic process, which is tailored to the needs and possibilities of the patient. The consultation thus structured involves the  patient as a person in all of his being with his own, personal resources. It initiates an individual, comprehensive  and efficient healing process. In addition, the doctor feels satisfaction and joy in his work,  which contributes significantly to his own well-being. 

The consultation process is ideally divided into seven steps, which are described in detail and  justified with reference to the literature. 


Bruno Kissling is a General Practitioner and former Teaching Doctor practising in Switzerland.  Peter Ryser is a specialist in Systemic and Family Therapy and works as Consultant in Solution-Oriented Counseling in Medicine.

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