University of Washington

Department of Rehabilitation Medicine

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Expert opinion and controversies in musculoskeletal and sports medicine: Conflict of interest


Standaert, C. J., Schofferman, J. A., & Herring, S. A



Publication Info:

Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 90:1647-1651


Standaert CJ, Schofferman JA, Herring SA. Expert opinion and controversies in musculoskeletal and sports medicine: conflict of interest. Medical providers are faced with conflicts of interest (COIs) on a routine basis, but there is growing concern over the effects of COIs on medical care, medical education, research, product development, and other aspects of the health care system. The data clearly indicate that medical providers are subconsciously influenced by interactions with representatives of pharmaceutical and device manufacturers and that they are not very good at assessing the extent of this influence upon themselves. The data are also clear that potential bias arising from COIs is present in medical education and research. A number of professional medical associations have developed guidelines regarding interactions between medical providers and industry, and requirements for disclosure have become commonplace. The impact of these regulations and of disclosure on managing COI is unclear, however, and it is extremely important that providers manage the conflicts present on their own. A broad awareness of the effects of COIs and disclosure is necessary if providers are going to be able to offer the best care for their patients.

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