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August 17, 1970

The Law and Clinical Medicine

Author Affiliations

University of Illinois Chicago

JAMA. 1970;213(7):1196-1197. doi:10.1001/jama.1970.03170330076025

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The practice of law involves the adversary approach, each protagonist stating the facts in the light most favorable to his client and rebutting his opponent by any legal means available. Medicine, on the contrary, is a truth-seeking science, aimed at arriving at the one correct diagnosis and treatment. "And never the twain shall meet."

The authors, one a physician well qualified in the medical-legal field, the other a noted trial attorney, have begun each of the book's 15 chapters —called "clinics"—with a case report, much the same way as it is presented in a legal case book or trial brief. After the problem is set forth, it is explored from a legal as well as a medical point of view, finally arriving at a judicial determination of the hypothetical question of law. The involved legal issues are explored and elaborated lucidly and intelligently, combining legal jargon with medical interpretations. This