What role does uncertainty play in the doctor’s diagnostic reasoning process? Would it not be better to avoid uncertainty as much as possible? In this article we answer this question from an epistemological perspective. Doctors build up relevant, situational knowledge during the diagnostic process through listening, observation and interpretation during their contact with the patient. Uncertainty can play a crucial role in this. We use a practical case to illustrate how allowing in some uncertainty – in the form of gut feelings – can improve the quality of the diagnostic thought process.
Ned Tijdschr Geneeskd. 2019 Jan 9;163. pii: D3181.
C.F. Stolper, M.W.J. van de Wiel, G.J. DInant,┬áP.A.M. Van Royen.