In the history of medicine, the consultation is an old and honored function, participated in by two or more members of the profession with the idea of assistance, exchange of information, and the passing from one to the other of advice gained from special knowledge and experience. In the past, it has been a matter of honorable recognition that certain teachers and elders of the profession have been approached by their younger colleagues to assist them in special problems relating to diagnosis or planning of a treatment regimen. It has been a form of teaching and a form of friendly assistance. The increase of knowledge concerning the great mass of medical information and the growth of specialties and subspecialties has expanded the need for consultation generally throughout the profession.
The word "consultation" is, of course, used to express a number of different functions. When it refers to the meeting of
Daniel Blain, R. Finley Gayle. DISTRIBUTION, FORM, AND EXTENT OF PSYCHIATRIC CONSULTATIONS. JAMA. 1954;154(15):1266–1271. doi:10.1001/jama.1954.02940490030008