Ethical forces that shape a career in surgery

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8 Scopus citations


Our profession is based on ethical behavior, which extends far beyond the rule of law. In this Festschrift for Hiram C. Polk, the ethical forces that shape a career in surgery-including their impact on the timely issue of medical errors, truth-telling, and disclosure-are discussed. The philosophical underpinnings (as addressed by Kant and Aristotle, among others) that may guide the surgeon are considered and discussed with particular emphasis on their relevance to the practice of surgery. The roles that courage, self-evaluation, and teaching play in our practices are reviewed as are new initiatives for improved outcomes for our patients-our ultimate professional goal.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)319-323
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican journal of surgery
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Database
  • Ethics in surgery
  • Moral theory
  • Residency training
  • Truth-telling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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