_The_ _Routledge Companion to Philosophy of Medicine _is a comprehensive guide to topics in the fields of epistemology and metaphysics of medicine. It examines traditional topics such as the concept of disease, causality in medicine, the epistemology of the randomized controlled trial, the biopsychosocial model, explanation, clinical judgment and phenomenology of medicine and emerging topics, such as philosophy of epidemiology, measuring harms, the concept of disability, nursing perspectives, race and gender, the metaphysics of Chinese medicine, and narrative medicine. Each of (...) the 48 chapters is written especially for this volume and with a student audience in mind. For pedagogy and clarity, each chapter contains an extended example illustrating the ideas discussed. This text is intended for use as a reference for students in courses in philosophy of medicine and philosophy of science, and pairs well with _The_ _Routledge Companion to Bioethics_ for use in medical humanities and social science courses. (shrink)
COVID-19 presents many challenges, both clinical and philosophical. In this paper we discuss a major lacuna that COVID-19 revealed in our philosophy and understanding of medicine. Whereas we have some understanding of how physician-scientists interrogate the world to learn more about medicine, we do not understand the epistemological costs and benefits of the various ways clinicians acquire new knowledge in their fields. We will also identify reasons this topic is important both when the world is facing a pandemic and when (...) it is not. (shrink)
The ontology of medicine—the question of whether disease entities are real or not—is an underdeveloped area of philosophical inquiry. This essay explains the primary question at issue in medical ontology, discusses why answering this question is important from both a philosophical and a practical perspective, and argues that the problem of medical ontology is unique, i.e., distinct, from the ontological problems raised by other sciences and therefore requires its own analysis.
Rationale One's understanding of medical progress – what it is, how it is pursued and how it is assessed – may be deeply dependent on one's understanding of the metaphysics of medicine, and of diseases in particular. -/- Aims and Objectives In this paper I present a new account of the nature of diseases, neither realist nor constructivist, and describe what progress in medicine looks like if we understand diseases in this way. -/- Conclusions This new account, Constructive Realism, may (...) provide a better account of medicine than either realism or constructivism. (shrink)
We are pleased to once again present to the readers of Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics papers from the Philosophy of Medicine Roundtable. Previous issues have followed the 3rd and 4th Roundtables, and the current issue presents a selection from the more than 20 papers presented at the 5th Philosophy of Medicine Roundtable, which took place in New York, at Columbia University, in November 2013. Like its predecessors, held in Birmingham, AL, Rotterdam, and San Sebastian, this Roundtable attracted speakers from around (...) the world. It also featured keynote presentations from Rita Charon of Columbia University and Ross Upshur of the University of Toronto.It may seem somewhat odd to feature a special issue on philosophy of medicine in a journal that effectively has philosophy of medicine in its title. However, a review of the contents of this journal and similar ones, such as the Journal of Medicine and Philosophy, will quickly reveal such an issue’s purpose. The dominant content of these j .. (shrink)
The present volume is one of a type we should soon expect to be seeing more of in philosophy of medicine. Philosophy of medicine has now been around long enough that entire careers, or at least substantial portions of careers, can and have been devoted to it. This is an important milestone in the field.This is true, even though, as the author indicates in the introduction, this is not solely a book of philosophy of medicine. Investigations in philosophy of medicine, (...) and the essays included in this volume in particular, can not only contribute to “the development of philosophy of medicine as a discipline” but can also “test and help revise some of [philosophy of science’s] views” . Thus, this book is intended as a contribution both to philosophy of medicine as a specific discipline and to philosophy of science generally. Both of these aspects of the book could attract the attention of the current audience.The book focuses .. (shrink)
Abstract: Most commentators have assumed that Lucretius's symmetry argument against the fear of death is flawed. There remains, however, dispute as to what the flaw is. After establishing what I understand the target of Lucretius's argument to be (a desire for a longer life as such), I argue for a novel interpretation of what the flaw is, namely, that extending one's life into the time before one was actually born would be an uncertain bet for one who wanted to extend (...) his life, whereas extending one's life beyond the time one actually dies is a sure bet. This account of what the flaw is has the particular merit of relying only on simple concepts used in everyday reasoning and thus can explain why Lucretius's argument gains no traction even in the absence of sophisticated philosophical analysis. (shrink)