Physical diagnosis versus modern technology. A review

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33 Scopus citations


The role of physical diagnosis in an age of modern diagnostic technology has been evaluated by investigators assessing specific techniques in a number of areas, though there has been no systematic comprehensive study of the sensitivity, specificity, cost-benefit ratio, and reliability of physical diagnosis relative to technologic diagnostic tools. In a review of published studies comparing physical with nonphysical diagnostic techniques, the startling accuracy of physical diagnosticians in some areas contrasts sharply with the extremely poor correlation of physical findings with autopsy or imaging studies in others. In a time of constricting financial resources, physicians-and those who teach or judge physicians' skills-must begin to compare physical and nonphysical diagnostic techniques rigorously so that the best, safest, and least expensive diagnostic test is chosen in each clinical situation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)377-382
Number of pages6
JournalWestern Journal of Medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1990

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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