For reasons I do not fully understand, since moving to the South-west in 1978, I have become interested in legal matters that touch on my interests in pediatrics and medical genetics. Perhaps it is a sign of approaching senility. Perhaps it is curiosity about the rising tide of medically related litigation. Or perhaps it is scientific interest.
In any event, I have attempted to prepare myself both by studying each case in which I have been consulted and by reading and rereading Robert L. Brent's1-3 writings on the medicolegal aspects of teratology and pediatrics and on responsible expert witnessing. Brent has urged those of us foolish enough to enter into these matters to treat testimony as a "scholarly endeavor" and to function not as "partisans" but rather as scholars. I have consulted on over 100 legal cases and have served as an expert witness in many of these cases.
Hecht F. Agent A: Genetics and Litogens. Am J Dis Child. 1987;141(8):839–840. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1987.04460080025018
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