The INTERNIST-1/QUICK MEDICAL REFERENCE project--status report

West J Med. 1986 Dec;145(6):816-22.


INTERNIST-1 and its successor, QUICK MEDICAL REFERENCE (QMR), are computer programs designed to provide health care professionals with diagnostic assistance in general internal medicine. Both programs rely on the INTERNIST-1 computerized knowledge base, which comprehensively describes 570 diseases in internal medicine. The philosophies behind the development of each program differ. Whereas INTERNIST-1 functions solely as a high-powered diagnostic consultant program, the QMR program acts more as an information tool, providing users with multiple ways of reviewing and manipulating the diagnostic information in the program's knowledge base. At the lowest level, the program can be viewed as an electronic textbook of medicine. In addition, the QMR program has the ability to assist users with generating hypotheses in complex patient cases. The QMR program has not been evaluated formally as an information tool for practicing physicians. A preliminary study indicates that QMR's case-analysis capabilities are of potential benefit in most patients in internal medicine admitted for diagnostic evaluation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Diagnosis, Computer-Assisted*
  • Humans
  • Information Systems
  • Internal Medicine*
  • Software*