A Review of Iliad and Quick Medical Reference for Primary Care Providers
Two Diagnostic Computer Programs
Walton Sumner II, MD
Arch Fam Med. 1993;2(1):87-95.
Two diagnostic computer programs, Iliad (Applied Informatics Inc, Salt Lake City, Utah) and Quick Medical Reference (Camdat Corp, Pittsburgh, Pa), are commercially available. Both describe a large subset of internal medicine diseases. These programs, also called knowledge bases, have different structures and diagnostic methods and emphasize somewhat different experimental observations regarding problem solving and expert diagnostic behavior. Quick Medical Reference has more diverse reference features and emphasizes diagnostic competitors (diseases that explain similar features in a case). Iliad has better developed teaching features and emphasizes a probabilistic approach. The histories and methods of these programs place various constraints on their diagnostic capabilities, especially from a primary care perspective. Although neither program is currently likely to fill the role of an expert diagnostic consultant for a family practitioner, both have potential as unique reference and teaching tools in primary care.
From the Program in Medical Information Science, Dartmouth Medical School, Lebanon, NH.
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