As scientists we all have beliefs and the purpose of the scientific experiment is to test those beliefs. Yet medical history is littered with untested beliefs acted upon for decades or even centuries until the application of scientific method has led to their being discarded, often with great reluctance. These might merely concern the theory of medicine or, more importantly, they might concern patients; for example, numerous futile operations were done to remove healthy organs of patients — tonsils, gall-bladders and colons — because of the untested and unproved hypothesis of focal sepsis. A scientific approach is more humane and careful clinical trials prevent useless and dangerous drugs being inflicted upon the public.
KeywordsPlacebo Arthritis Mercury Tuberculosis Penicillamine
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