Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 2 (3):319-329 (1981)

It is argued that the common definition of diagnosis as the determination of the nature of a disease is misleading. Many diagnoses are not the names of disease entities. This finding reflects the integral relation of the diagnostic task to the rest of clinical reasoning. Diagnosis has no separate goal of its own, in particular it does not have the goal of determining the nature of a disease. Instead, diagnosis contributes to the general goals of clinical medicine. Any attempt to model diagnostic reasoning abstracted from the rest of clinical reasoning will yield an inadequate representation of diagnosis. Such a distortion of medical reasoning will blind us to whatever implications an adequate epistemology of medicine may have for an understanding of the relation between theoretical and practical knowledge in other contexts.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/BF00882078
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 63,219
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Causation in Medicine: The Disease Entity Model.Caroline Whitbeck - 1977 - Philosophy of Science 44 (4):619-637.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

The Causal Explanatory Functions of Medical Diagnoses.Hane Maung - 2017 - Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 38 (1):41-59.
Classical Medicine V Alternative Medical Practices.M. H. Kottow - 1992 - Journal of Medical Ethics 18 (1):18-22.

View all 6 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Causal Reasoning and the Diagnostic Process.Dominick A. Rizzi - 1994 - Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 15 (3):315-333.
The Diagnostic Process, the Diagnosis and Homeostasis.Edmond A. Murphy - 1988 - Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 9 (2).
Rational Diagnosis and Treatment.Henrik R. Wulff - 1986 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 11 (2):123-134.
Three Paradoxes of Medical Diagnosis.G. William Moore & Grover M. Hutchins - 1987 - Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 2 (2):197-215.


Added to PP index

Total views
74 ( #144,570 of 2,448,388 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
2 ( #304,462 of 2,448,388 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes