Perspectives in Biology and Medicine 59 (1):132-146 (2016)

Abstract
The routine practice of clinical research involving patient-subjects without informed consent prior to 1966 unquestionably was unethical. Does it follow that all clinical research involving competent adult patient-subjects is unethical without informed consent?In his landmark 1966 paper, Henry Beecher noted that of the 50 example studies he had originally compiled in preparation for that paper, only two even mentioned consent, and he observed further that mention of consent is “meaningless unless one knows how fully the patient was informed”. Some of the studies in Beecher’s paper, such as one comparing sulfadiazine with no treatment to assess the complications of streptococcal pharyngitis (when the...
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DOI 10.1353/pbm.2016.0023
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