Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Parry's dictum

'It is more important to know what sort of patient has the disease than what kind of disease the patient has'

And thanks to a Welshman (ok, ok...) by the name of Caleb Parry who trained for medicine in Scotland, and practised in Bath, England for this great quote.

One of the problems with population based, evidenced-based medicine, is that it takes little account of the 'sort of patient' one is trying to help. I realise now that a tacit acknowledgement of this dictum informs so much of my practice of medicine. Why do I see two apparent similar patients of similar age and same gender with the same problem, and yet treat them so differently? It's all thanks to Parry.


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