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An Outline of Sociology as Applied to Medicine - 3rd Edition - ISBN: 9780723616917, 9781483183701

An Outline of Sociology as Applied to Medicine

3rd Edition

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Author: David Armstrong
eBook ISBN: 9781483183701
Imprint: Butterworth-Heinemann
Published Date: 19th July 1989
Page Count: 150
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An Outline of Sociology as Applied to Medicine, Third Edition provides an understanding of the origins, nature, and context of illness in society. This book discusses the relationship between health care and the society in which it occurs. Organized into 15 chapters, this edition begins with an overview of some deficiencies of the biomedical model of illness. This text then explores the traditional medical model, which holds that disease is a lesion inside the human body that produces two types of indicator of its presence, namely, the signs and symptoms. Other chapters consider the difference of perspectives between doctor and patients. This book discusses as well the presence of various biological causes of illness that is strongly influenced by social factors. The final chapter deals with the social significance of medicine. This book is a valuable resource for sociologists. Primary care physicians and specialists will also find this book extremely useful.

Table of Contents

Preface to the Third Edition

1 Introduction

2 Going to the Doctor

The Experience of Symptoms

Illness Behavior

Importance of Illness Behavior for the Doctor

Illness Behavior and the Medical Model

3 Measuring Health and Illness


Morbidity Prevalence Studies

Sickness Absence Rates


Measures of Functioning

Self-Report Measures

Subjective Health Measures

Quality of Life Measures

4 Social Causes of Illness

Causal Models

Establishing a Causal Relationship

Social Factors

Social Integration

Social Support

Life Events

5 Labeling Behavior

Primary Deviance

Secondary Deviance


Disability and Handicap

Labeling and Psychiatric Disease

6 Social Patterns of Illness: I

Explaining Illness Patterns

Historical Changes






7 Social Patterns of Illness: II


Social Class

8 Coping with Illness

Managing Labels

Coping with Chronic Illness


9 Models of Illness

Exploring Abdominal Pain

Symptoms and Pathology

Biographical Medicine

Alternative Models of Illness

Models of the Doctor-Patient Relationship

10 Types of Health Care


Family Care

Community Care

Self-Help Groups

Professional Care

11 Clinical Autonomy

Controlling Information

Controlling Costs

Paying the Doctor

Evaluating Doctors' Decisions

12 Delivering Health Care

Allocating Scarce Resources

The Market for Health Care in the USA

Government Provision of Health Care in the UK

Towards a National Health Service

13 Evaluating Health Care

Is the Health Care System Effective/Efficient?

Does the Health Care System Meet the 'Real'

Needs of Its Consumers?

Is the Health Care System Fair?

Is the Health Care System Iatrogenic?

14 The Social Basis of Disease

Defining Disease

Normality in Medicine

The Biological Basis of Disease

15 The Social Role of Medicine

Illness as a Deviance

The Doctor as Agent of Social Control

Explaining the Place of Medicine




No. of pages:
© Butterworth-Heinemann 1989
19th July 1989
eBook ISBN:

About the Author

David Armstrong

Affiliations and Expertise

National Institute of Environmental Health Science, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, U.S.A.

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