Comments on Wulff’s, Thung’s and Lindahl’s Essays on the Growth of Medical Knowledge

  • Lennart Nordenfelt
Part of the Philosophy and Medicine book series (PHME, volume 36)


Henrik Wulff’s and P.J. Thung’s highly interesting papers are alike in that they assume a quite general perspective toward medical research and medical knowledge. They also partly argue in the same direction, make similar observations, and draw similar conclusions. They share the view that medicine cannot be just a biological science. Medical research, they say, frequently focuses on problems which are not purely scientific in nature. Therefore, it requires a great deal of non-scientific knowledge.


Lung Cancer Medical Knowledge Ethical Code Population Research Biological Concept 
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  1. 1.
    Lindahl, B.I.B.: 1988, ‘On Weighting Causes of Death. An Analysis of Purposes and Criteria of Selection’, in A. Brändström and L.-G. Tedebrand (eds.), Society, Health and Population During the Demographic Transition, Almqvist & Wiksell International, Stockholm, pp. 131–156.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Lindahl, B.I.B.: 1990, ‘The Development of Population Research on Causes of Death: Growth of Knowledge or Accumulation of Data?’, in this volume, pp. 103–119.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Nordenfelt, L.: 1983, Causes of Death: A Philosophical Essay, Swedish Council for Planning and Coordination of Research, Report 83:2, Stockholm.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Nordenfelt, L.: 1987, On the Nature of Health, D. Reidel Publishing Co., Dordrecht, Netherlands.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Thung, P.J.: 1990, ‘The Growth of Medical Knowledge’, in this volume, pp. 87–101.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    WHO: 1977, Manual of the International Statistical Classification of Diseases, Injuries, and Causes of Death, Vol. 1, 9th revision, WHO, Geneva.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Wulff, H.: 1990, ‘Function and Value of Medical Knowledge in Modern Diseases’, in this volume, pp. 75–86.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lennart Nordenfelt
    • 1
  1. 1.Linköping UniversityLinköpingSweden

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