Abstract For reasons I do not fully understand, since moving to the South-west in 1978, I have become interested in legal matters that touch on my interests in pediatrics and medical genetics. Perhaps it is a sign of approaching senility. Perhaps it is curiosity about the rising tide of medically related litigation. Or perhaps it is scientific interest. In any event, I have attempted to prepare myself both by studying each case in which I have been consulted and by reading and rereading Robert L. Brent's1-3 writings on the medicolegal aspects of teratology and pediatrics and on responsible expert witnessing. Brent has urged those of us foolish enough to enter into these matters to treat testimony as a "scholarly endeavor" and to function not as "partisans" but rather as scholars. I have consulted on over 100 legal cases and have served as an expert witness in many of these cases. References 1. Brent RL: Medicolegal aspects of teratology. Read before the Seventh Mead-Johnson Symposium on Perinatal and Developmental Medicine, Vail, Colo, June 8-12, 1975. 2. Brent RL: Litigation-produced pain, disease and suffering: An experience with congenital malformation lawsuits . Teratology 1977;16: 1-14.Crossref 3. Brent RL: The irresponsible expert witness: A failure of biomedical graduate education and professional accountability . Pediatrics 1982; 70:754-762. 4. Van den Bosch J: Microcephaly in the Netherlands: A clinical and genetical study . Ann Hum Genet 1959;23:91-116.Crossref 5. Kloepfer HW, Platou RV, Hansche WJ: Manifestations of a recessive gene for microcephaly in a population isolate . J Genet Hum 1964;13:52-59. 6. Qazi QH, Reed TE: A possible major contribution to mental retardation in the general population by the gene for microcephaly . Clin Genet 1975;7:85-90.Crossref 7. Mckusick VA: Mendelian Inheritance in Man: Catalogs of Autosomal Dominant, Autosomal Recessive, and X-Linked Phenotypes , ed 7. Baltimore, The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1986.
American Journal of Diseases of Children – American Medical Association
Published: Aug 1, 1987
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