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December 31, 1960

THE ROLE OF THE RADIOLOGIST IN MEDICAL DIAGNOSIS

Author Affiliations

San Francisco, Calif.

JAMA. 1960;174(18):2224-2225. doi:10.1001/jama.1960.03030180044011
Abstract

The diagnostic radiologist is a clinical consultant who is expected to help the referring physician help his patients. How is this best accomplished?

In a recent paper,1 Dr. Max Ritvo of Boston discussed this topic in what amounted to a whirlwind tour of diagnostic radiology, its past, its present, its accomplishments, its future. Accomplishments were emphasized. If there is some truth in the playful but painful confession we make to our students at graduation time, that about half of what we taught them is untrue—but we cannot tell which half—Dr. Ritvo was charitably silent about it. But he also discussed some of the limitations of roentgen diagnosis. Ordinarily, little is said about this, yet knowledge of the limitations of one's method is important knowledge. Owen H. Wangensteen once wrote that "the limitation of a method constitutes no reflection upon its user, save in so far as he fails to

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