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BMJ 1997; 314 doi: (Published 22 February 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;314:612
  1. George Dunea, attending physician
  1. Cook County Hospital, Chicago, USA

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    Typical American medical graduates emerge from their protracted period of training with an excellent foundation in the biological sciences and a large student loan to repay. Increasingly encouraged to enter primary care, they may at times find their scientific training superfluous, as they spend their days dealing with tension headaches, chronic back pain, anxiety neurosis, panic attacks, and social problems that they cannot solve. Yet they will find that their patients hold science in high regard, many having consulted books on psychic healing, levitation, firewalking, poltergeists, and better ways of communing with angels.

    They will also find that despite …

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