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September 7, 1929

Medico-Legal Problems.

JAMA. 1929;93(10):794. doi:10.1001/jama.1929.02710100056051

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In this book the distinguished English jurist has assembled essays on the legal responsibility of the surgeon, the ethical, legal and medical aspects of abortion, the law and ethics of medical confidences, and the sterilization of the unfit. The author writes in beautiful prose with a sense of humor, and his work is distinctly thought provoking since it emphasizes the new legal problems that have arisen through the advances of medical science and through changing social relationships. He asks, for instance, "What are the rights of a wife whose husband submits to a monkey gland operation and takes to climbing the family chandelier?" He considers "Is the surgeon justified in removing what may be described as a normal middle-aged double chin?" and he answers most of his questions with the Ciceronian maxim, "Let the good of the people be the paramount law."

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