Should doctors still examine patients?
Patel N, Ngo E, Paterick TE, Chandrasekaran K, Tajik J. Should doctors still examine patients?. International Journal of Cardiology. 2016;221:55-57.
The physical examination skills of young physicians in training need careful examination as advancing technology seems to have replaced those skills compared to prior generations of physicians. A question to ponder is how should medical education address the convincing evidence that physician trainees of today are less astute at the physical examination than those that came before them? This inquiry must address whether the decline in physical examination skills hinders accurate, cost effective, and timely diagnoses. Additionally, it must consider whether the absence of a comprehensive physical examination impairs the patient-physician relationship. This type of inquiry leads to the conclusion that the physical examination and technology must be merged as the clinical situation dictates to provide accurate, cost effective and accurate diagnoses. The carefully performed physical examination in conjunction with a detailed history should dictate the use of our ever-advancing technologic advances in medicine.