Views & Reviews Medical classics

The Final Diagnosis

BMJ 2007; 334 doi: (Published 03 May 2007) Cite this as: BMJ 2007;334:957
  1. Sanjay A Pai, consultant pathologist, Manipal Hospital, Bangalore, India
  1. sanjayapai{at}

    “As is your pathology, so is your practice,” said Sir William Osler, the philosopher-physician over 100 years ago. While today some may not entirely agree with the sweeping generalisation of the statement, it remains a fact that pathology forms the bedrock of medicine. Arthur Hailey, too, recognised this fact when he wrote The Final Diagnosis in 1959. While most novels and movies dealing with medicine revolve around clinicians, particularly surgeons, Hailey decided to make the department of pathology and the pathologist the core of the action. Surgeons and other physicians in …

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