In October 2006, Chicago dermatologist David Cornbleet, MD, was found stabbed to death in his downtown office. The assailant, according to media accounts, was a former patient, who later confessed that he had returned to Cornbleet's office 4 years after his first visit and attacked the physician because he believed that the Accutane Cornbleet had prescribed caused impotence and other medical problems.
The case highlights the vulnerability of clinicians who may encounter patients who are agitated or distressed. In fact, many clinicians reported being threatened or attacked in a few recent surveys of clinicians working in hospital or private practice settings.
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Most clinicians report experiencing violence at some point in their careers. In some fields, such threats are a frequent occurrence.
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