What is medicine?
Recently, in the press, radio and television and cyberspace, we come across different terms about medicine: Western medicine, traditional medicine, acupuncture, complementary medicine, herbal medicine, etc. But what exactly is medicine? The truth is that medicine is a branch of science. I do not intend to discuss what science is here, but science has properties that are distinct from philosophy or metaphysics. Science is the result of experience and experimentation. Medical science is not separate from this feature of science. In fact, there is only one medical science, and that is a science that is based on scientific evidence. If we believe that the example of some occupational therapy has an effect on the treatment of the disease, then scientific evidence must be provided. This evidence must be based on scientific studies and evidence; That is, the scientific experiment must first confirm its effect. Secondly, this scientific experiment can be repeated. Of course, it should be noted that every science or scientific experiment also has its strengths and weaknesses. Scientific evidence is also graded, sometimes the evidence is strong and sometimes it is weak. Scientific observations or studies also have their own principles. It is the duty of every physician to provide this patient with the necessary treatment recommendations by studying this evidence. The physician has a duty to provide the best treatment according to the patient’s condition with the knowledge of this evidence and its effects. Sometimes there are different ways to treat the disease. Each of these methods is associated with positive and negative points in scientific studies. It is the physician’s responsibility to explain all of these points to the patient and to assist him or her in making decisions. However, it should be noted that the patient is ultimately free to choose his treatment method. The patient is independent in this matter and the doctor can not take this independence from him. The doctor should give the best advice to the patient based on scientific evidence. Scientific evidence or treatment results can be obtained in a variety of ways. This evidence may be the result of years of experience or the result of careful scientific studies or the treatment of a group of patients and the scientific evaluation of its effects. I do not intend to discuss here the different methods of scientific evaluation of different treatments, but it should be noted that every method that the doctor offers to the patient as medicine must be based on scientific evidence. It does not matter if the procedure is based on chemotherapy or herbal or traditional medicines or methods such as surgery, acupuncture or energy therapy. If the doctor prescribes any of these methods to the patient, this should be based on scientific evidence or its effect. There is only one medical science and that is medicine based on scientific evidence. The physician should be familiar with this evidence and recommend the best treatment to the patient based on it.
Dr. Reza Saidi Firoozabadi – Transplant Surgeon