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Rudolf Firkow is quite incensed.  As a pathologist who had devoted his life to liver dysfunction, he was certain that he could tell the differences between normal and diseased tissues.  But a current issue of Arch. Histopath carries a bizarre article by some obscure philosopher stating that the concept of disease is irrelevant.  He cannot believe that a reputed journal would publish such arrant nonsense.  It seemed to be a waste of precious space, almost pathological.  He feels strong that if they continue to publish such rubbish, he should cancel his subscription.  He would like to write a rebuttal, but is perplexed by the philosophical jargon and does not even know where to start.


A number of questions were raised following the brainstorming session. Some of these are given below:

Does disease require a biological basis? Will absence of clear pathological signs exclude disease? Is the concept of a disease relevant? Do pathologists define disease differently? Does an altered histological picture denote disease? Can a  disease that remains undefined not be treated? Is a disease only a label of convenience? Does abnormaility at a tissue level denote disease? Does absence of an abnormality denote health?


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