X-Message-Number: 15504
Date: Wed, 31 Jan 2001 13:18:07 -0500
From: Kitty Antonik Wakfer <>
Subject: Short Comment from 2nd Row, Ettinger #15489

>Message #15489
>Date: Tue, 30 Jan 2001 16:27:17 EST
>Subject: Wakfer



>>One has to have detailed knowledge of the whole experiment and its purposes, 
>>in >order to conduct a worthwhile evaluation. 

>More drivel. A physician can examine a patient, or a vet can examine a dog or 
>cat, and make a diagnosis without knowing his previous history. The history 
>could in some cases be helpful, but that is usually a minor aspect. If the 
>X-ray shows a tumor, that is the main thing.

While I have been away from nursing for several years (spent in my 2nd
career as a mechanical engineer), many things have not changed in health
care during that time.  Shadows are what show on an x-ray and are
interpreted by the radiologist with suspected or probable diagnosis
provided.  The radiologist, even though he/she usually never sees the
patient, often asks for the patient's symptoms and even a brief
history.  This is also the case with MRIs and scans. 

Shadows can be things other than "tumors" - ingested, inserted, applied
foreign bodies (FOBs), impacted feces, and even artifacts.  The history
of a patient's activities are not just helpful but in many cases
essential. Even the undisputed presence of a "mass" on an x-ray most
often doesn't reveal it's nature; more definitive testing is required.

A deformed arm may truly be the result of a trauma and fracture, and
readily determined even if the patient is unconscious, without family or
friends at hand. But many, many medical cases would be better treated if
the physician depended more on a good history *and* physical then almost
solely on the battery of lab and x-rays so frequently used.  This I
learned many years ago while working for a learned and well-respected
gastroenterologist.  In the case of the veterinarians who treated my AZ
dogs, they paid close attention to the report by the owners of their
pets' behavior in making their diagnoses. This was especially important
since taking x-rays on most animals is difficult and often requires
anesthesia to produce readable films.


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