View Full Version : Disease, Diagnosis, and "House"

Smiling Ted
06-04-2008, 12:48 AM
Can anyone suggest a book, website, or database that lists diseases by cause and symptom (and allows cross-referencing)? Something accessible to a non-physician?

Something that would, for example, allow me to write a scene in which a doctor says "He has a, b, and c, so the differential diagnosis is e."

Yep, I'm thinking of taking a run at House. So sue me.

06-04-2008, 12:50 AM
Webmd.com, perhaps?

06-04-2008, 12:59 AM
WebMD Medical Symptom Checker



Kitty Pryde
06-04-2008, 01:10 AM
wrongdiagnosis.com is another fun one that is little more flexible. also, if you have access to a university account, many universities have access to more expensive, professional diagnosing databases.

06-04-2008, 01:13 AM
"He has a, b, and c, so the differential diagnosis is e."

If it worked that way we'd all be a lot better off. Let me explain by example. a, b, and c I will label as Fever, Vomiting, and Seizures.

Well, shit, Seizures sound pretty bad. Lets start there. There are tons of things that cause seizures. Did the patient get into any chemicals lately? Is he diabetic? Damn, the history is of no help. Fine, lets run some blood work and hope he doesn't seize again in the meanwhile cuz we gave him drugs.
Okay, fever, tons of causes there again. ...And so on. But House covers it reasonably well- examine the symptoms, determine what one item might cause all those symptoms (usually after breaking it up first), and run tests to prove it when you can (and when its fun for the plot development)

This is called the problem based approach to medicine. There are other ways, but I dunno the name. You might google for more.

You can also read about the DAMNITV scheme