Spirituality in Dermatology

by Jorge Ramon and David J. Elpern

This article was published in the July 2017 Archives of Dermatology


Spirituality is difficult to define, but a recent consensus conference defined it as the aspect of humanity that refers to the way individuals seek and express meaning and purpose. Spirituality is understood by many as a means by which one copes with chronic or life threatening illnesses. While some people may not believe in a specific faith, many are interested in spirituality.

Coming to grips with each individual patient’s spirituality requires a broad understanding of the person’s beliefs and values. Christina Puchalski’s FICA Spirituality History Tool1 can be a guide to a spirituality assessment:

F: the presence of Faith, belief, or meaning;
I: the Importance of spirituality in an individual’s life and the influence that belief system or values has on the person’s health care decision making;
C: the individual’s spiritual Community;
A: interventions to Address spiritual needs.

PDF of full article: Spirituality in Derm

1. Puchalski C. FICA Spiritual History Tool. George Washington Institute for Spirituality & Health, GeorgeWashington School of Medicine & Health Sciences. https://smhs.gwu.edu/gwish/clinical/fica /spiritual-history-tool. Accessed December 26, 2016. (Image is from GWISH)

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