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Journal of Long-Term Effects of Medical Implants

ISSN Print: 1050-6934
ISSN Online: 1940-4379

Journal of Long-Term Effects of Medical Implants

DOI: 10.1615/JLongTermEffMedImplants.v18.i1.180
20 pages

Abstract of "Epistemic Humility and Medical Practice"

Abraham Schwab
Philosophy Department, Indiana University Purdue University

ABSTRACT

There is a great deal said and written about the appropriate domain of medical practice, the best grounds for standards of practice, and the most effective organization of medical practice; and these perspectives do not always agree and regularly contradict one another. In this presentation, I will provide some preliminary insights into how to distinguish between legitimate and illegitimate claims about how medicine should be practiced, how medical practice should be organized, and the best standards of practice. According to the framework I outline, the legitimate claims in medical practice are cast as medical science and the overreaching claims as medical pseudo science. Failure to follow this framework risks the ethical practice of medicine by undermining informed consent, subjecting patients to unknown risks with unknown benefits, and undermining the good practice patterns of physicians.