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Article
May 18, 1907

The Neglect of the Anamnesis.

JAMA. 1907;XLVIII(20):1696. doi:10.1001/jama.1907.02520460052016

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Abstract

Scranton, Pa., April 26, 1907.

To the Editor:  —I agree with Dr. Bayard Holmes in his recent article (The Journal, April 20, page 1349) that the patient is our study and, that regardless of surroundings, conditions or circumstances, he expects us to cure him without reference to the name of the disease. The patient first asks: "Can you cure me?" Second: "How long will it take?" Scientific diagnostic means, such as the Widal typhoid reaction, used to the exclusion of common sense, will not make the patient well any quicker, as they are only confirmatory, and there are enough other signs to teach one that he is dealing with a sick man. I cite this method, not to condemn it, but to illustrate the tendency to forget that we are treating the genus Homo and not the bacilli.The first and foremost factor is the patient. Get him well. Forget,

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