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October 10, 1966

Clinical Epidemiology

JAMA. 1966;198(2):212. doi:10.1001/jama.1966.03110150160059

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Paul's presentation of epidemiology is a cocktail to be taken before beginning investigation in the medical sciences. Although a straightforward treatise, it does not handle epidemiology as if it were methodology. Epidemiology develops as an attitude toward learning, and application of intelligence to the search. Paul's epidemiology is bound by no techniques, nor is it confined by tight definitions. Even in the samples of diseases given, the sense of freedom is retained, and the effect is to endow epidemiology with a flavor and character it may not always exhibit in practice.

The current revision has naturally taken notice of events intervening since the 1958 edition. Fortunately, even with the remarkable additions to knowledge in many fields, the epidemiological approach to disease has changed little, if at all, in this time. So, Dr. Paul's epidemiology is as current as it has always been; only the examples to which he refers needed