Diagnosis, Therapy, and Evidence: Conundrums in Modern by Gerald N. Grob

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By Gerald N. Grob

Utilising ancient and modern info and case stories, the authors additionally study tonsillectomy, melanoma, middle affliction, nervousness, and melancholy, and determine ameliorations among rhetoric and truth and the weaknesses in analysis and therapy.

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Extra info for Diagnosis, Therapy, and Evidence: Conundrums in Modern American Medicine

Sample text

Statistically speaking, Quetelet wanted to use these data to determine averages and the limits of variations. The ultimate goal was to measure in a quantitative manner the relationship of two or more variable elements throughout their distribution. To be sure, Quetelet never moved beyond simple statistical averages; the discovery of the correlation coefficient had to await the work of Francis Galton and Karl Pearson at the end of the nineteenth century. Quetelet’s method consisted largely of computing averages in different populations.

At best, he wrote, insanity could be divided into two groups. The fi rst—idiocy and imbecility—was composed of individuals with congenital defects. 46 26 Diagnosis, Therapy, and Evidence If psychiatrists recognized that nosology was not critical to clinical practice, they were cognizant of its role in the collection of statistical data. In the nineteenth century a number of concerns had given rise to a new type of social inquiry whose methodological distinctiveness was a commitment to statistical research.

The seventeenth-century mercantilist concern with population and vital statistics was reinforced by nineteenth-century Baconian science, which tended to identify all of science with taxonomy. To this was added the fascination with social problems characteristic of all Western modernized nations. This fascination, in turn, stimulated interest in quantitative methods to a degree where virtually all significant problems were defi ned and described in statistical terms. Underlying the application of a quantitative methodology was the assumption that social phenomena could be explained in statistical terms.

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