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Table 1 Examples of the Biasing or Facilitating Influence of Facts within Personal Stories.

From: Do personal stories make patient decision aids more effective? A critical review of theory and evidence

Decision Aid Function Biasing by Personal Stories Facilitating by Personal Stories
Accurate and Balanced Information Narrator uses more (or less) value-laden and emotional terms to describe (less) favoured options. Narrator uses language that helps describe the emotional content of the options and decision.
Accurate and Balanced Information Narrator refers to only those facts important to him/her in choosing option A or rejecting option B. Narrator makes explicit the importance of exploring all options regardless of prior experiences.
Attention and guidance The smaller selection of facts used by the narrator to explain his/her choice is easier to process and evaluate. Guidance on how the narrator went about making the decision.
Attention and guidance The story primes/ reinforces selected facts interfering with processing of all facts. Presents facts in a more accessible way, making them easier to process and recall.
Patient evaluations/trade-offs Processing the values and trade-offs important to the narrator when s/he made their choice. Helps make explicit the role of different patients’ values and experiences to make the decision.
Patient evaluations/trade-offs Patient opinions about the narrator, and not the story content, used to make the choice. Provides relevant social reference and/or causal information to help patients reach judgments.