Never Do Unto Others What You Wouldn't Do to Yourself

Albert B. Lowenfels, MD


June 23, 2015

Physicians Who Experiment on Themselves

Despite the difficulty of drawing conclusions from a sample of one, and the strong possibility of self-bias, there are many reasons why a physician would first want to test a new research idea or a new drug on him- or herself. Convenience is certainly one reason—having an available, cooperative, motivated subject is a big advantage.

Ethical considerations are also important; before trying something that might be associated with harm on other people, would it not be sensible to perform a self-experiment? Self-experiments avoid all the time-consuming details of completing a grant application.

Can you identify these physicians who became patients for testing their own research ideas?


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