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January 31, 1977

Hospitalization for Possible Myocardial Infarction

JAMA. 1977;237(5):449. doi:10.1001/jama.1977.03270320027012

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To the Editor.—  The article by Schor et al is replete with various pejorative words, including the implication that many of the patients who were admitted were hospitalized unnecessarily or in error.The presentation of a patient to the emergency room with symptoms not incompatible with acute myocardial infarction sometimes represents an epistemic dilemma that can only be resolved in a safe place. If it turns out that the patient has not had an acute myocardial infarction, no "error" has been made. However, the use of language like this in a scientific article indicates a lack of understanding of the problem-solving nature of hospitalization.