San Diego Law Review

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This Comment explores the validity and development of patient control over the medical information-gathering and decision-making process. The author argues that, traditionally, the doctrine of informed consent governed the presentation of information about methods of treatment by a physician to allow a patient to make an informed choice. The author further argues that recent decisions in California and Washington have extended the consent doctrine in order to promote patient participation in diagnostic decision-making. The author considers the policies and problems underlying informed refusal in the diagnostic process, and suggests that informed refusal should be favored by advocates of patient autonomy.

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