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Epidemiologic Evidence: Use at Your Own Risk?

Fuller, Jonathan (2020) Epidemiologic Evidence: Use at Your Own Risk? [Preprint]

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Abstract

What meaning does epidemiologic evidence have for the individual? In evidence-based medicine, epidemiologic evidence measures the patient’s risk of the outcome or the change in their risk due to an intervention. The patient’s risk is commonly understood as an individual probability. The problem of understanding epidemiologic evidence and risk thus becomes the challenge of interpreting individual patient probabilities. I argue that the patient’s risk is interpreted ontically, as a propensity. After exploring formidable problems with this interpretation in the medical context, I propose an epistemic reinterpretation of individual patient probabilities as credences. On this view, epidemiologic evidence informs medical uncertainty.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Fuller, JonathanJPF53@pitt.edu
Additional Information: Forthcoming in Philosophy of Science.
Keywords: risk, epidemiology, evidence-based medicine, probability, philosophy of medicine
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Medicine > Clinical Trials
Specific Sciences > Medicine > Epidemiology
General Issues > Evidence
Specific Sciences > Probability/Statistics
Depositing User: Dr Jonathan Fuller
Date Deposited: 04 Apr 2020 01:19
Last Modified: 04 Apr 2020 01:19
Item ID: 17046
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Medicine > Clinical Trials
Specific Sciences > Medicine > Epidemiology
General Issues > Evidence
Specific Sciences > Probability/Statistics
Date: 2020
URI: https://philsci-archive-dev.library.pitt.edu/id/eprint/17046

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