Chapter

The Clinical Method and the Patient

ERIC J. CASSELL

in Doctoring

Published in print July 1997 | ISBN: 9780195113235
Published online November 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199999828 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195113235.003.0006
The Clinical Method and the Patient

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This chapter asks: how can the clinical method and its techniques of observation that have served medicine so well be extended to the person of the patient? There are four distinct kinds of information, apart from brute facts, that doctors acquire from their patients — information that tells them about the patient as this individual patient — meanings, emotions, aesthetics, and intuitions. The final step in the process of knowing the patient, and an essential feature of the clinical method, is description. In relation to findings on the physical examination, describing what has been observed is essential to the observation.

Keywords: emotions; individual patients; aesthetics; intuitions; description; physician training

Chapter.  8901 words. 

Subjects: Palliative Medicine

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