Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Ethics in the laboratory examination of patients


Various value problems are connected with the clinical examination of patients. The purpose of this literature review is to clarify: 1) in which patient examinations ethical problems are generally found; 2) what kind of ethical problems are found in the different phases of the examination process, and 3) what kind of ethical problems are found in connection with the use of examination results. Genetic testing, autopsy, prenatal and HIV examinations were ethically the most problematic laboratory examinations. The most problematic phase in the laboratory examination process proved to be the pre-analytic phase. At present the results of laboratory examination are used more and more often for the prediction of diseases. The problems appear when the examination results are used for discrimination and stigmatisation. Because of the lack of empirical ethical research, it is important to chart empirical knowledge about present value conflict situations involved in the laboratory examination process.

  • Ethic
  • laboratory
  • test
  • examination
  • diagnosis
  • patient

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.

Other content recommended for you