BMJ 1994; 309 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.309.6954.618 (Published 03 September 1994) Cite this as: BMJ 1994;309:618

A survey of general practitioners' attitudes to the prevention of coronary heart disease by health promotion found that many thought the work “tedious, dull and boring” (Sociology of Health and Illness 1994;16:372- 93). Doctors were unhappy with the uncertainties entailed in identifying risk factors, ambivalent about the effectiveness of changes in behaviour, and concerned that their actions were a moral intrusion into their patients' lives.

A discussion of ethics in the “Annals of the Royal College of Surgeons of England” (1994;76:223-7) looks at and rejects the possibility of operations on the fetus for craniofacial anomalies. It concludes by quoting Lord Scarman: “Let the doctors work out the ethical implications … if they get their house in order the common law will follow the guidance.”

The success rate of trabeculectomy in the treatment of primary open angle glaucoma is higher in white than black patients. A study in London (British Journal of Ophthalmology 1994;78:466-75) has suggested that the explanation may be that black people have conjunctivas with more macrophages and possibly more fibroblasts; this leads to an …

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