6. Understand how language provides the framework for the acquisition of new knowledge.

7. Recognize how scientific language objectifies relationships.

Section 2 Exercise 3 The medical history

After having read this humorous approach to taking a medical history answer the discussion questions below.

  1. Summarize the author's point, using the editorial comment introducing it, as a guide: "It tells you how knowing the medical language precedes medical knowledge." Is this a positive thing? Explain your answer in the context of your expectations/experience of medical education.
  2. Can the author's point be applied to a patient's psychological history? Write some short 'generic' descriptors of a patient with an emotional problem such as depression, and then rewrite your description more precisely.
  3. How precise was your description of the Mueck patient? Revisit it and try to be even more precise with your observations.
  4. How do the tools and language of medicine determine what medical culture values? Give an example.