Medicine: To Throw at the Cat

The world of medicine boasts some 6,000 medical journals, almost a tenth of them in the U. S. A major requirement for scientific publication is dullness. All articles in British and U. S. journals are cut to the same hidebound pattern: The problem is stated, its history reviewed (often from the time of Hippocrates), the experiments or clinical notes baldly recorded, briefly "discussed." Finally the whole structure is crowned with conclusions—if there are any.

Medical editors frown upon literary graces as Puritans frowned upon dancing. Almost all medical reports are warty with Greek and...

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