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A Journal on Sports Medicine

Official Journal of the Italian Sports Medicine Federation
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Medicina dello Sport 2017 September;70(3):261-5

DOI: 10.23736/S0025-7826.17.03181-7


language: English, Italian

Sports medicine as an ethical practice: between protocol and interpretation

Bruno DI PIETRO 1, 2, Emanuele ISIDORI 3, 4, Clea P. HADJSTEPHANOU 3, Alessia DI GIANFRANCESCO 3, Fabio PIGOZZI 2, 3

1 Department of Movement Sciences and Wellness, “Parthenope” University of Naples, Naples, Italy; 2 International Federation of Sports Medicine (FIMS), Lausanne, Switzerland; 3 Department of Movement, Human and Health Sciences, “Foro Italico” University of Rome, Rome, Italy; 4 University of Cyprus, Nicosia, Cyprus


In this paper, we discuss some key issues dealing with sport medicine as an ethical practice focused on the care of the person in the context of sport and physical activity. The aim of our perspective was to show the main moral and educational dimensions involved in sports medicine and its profession. We argue that the sport physician, due to complex tasks to perform, should be helped to develop as a reflective practitioner. That is to say, as a professional aware of her/his role of moral agent capable of using critical and practical thinking applied to things. The role and function of the sports physician are made of several hermeneutical actions derived from specific professional tasks. For this reason, in conclusion, we will sketch a possible scheme to interpret sports medical care not as a protocol of actions but as a permanent hermeneutical praxis based on techne, phronesis, and synesis, three fundamental categories which hermeneutics, as an interpretation science of the person, shares with medicine as a science of the human care.

KEY WORDS: Doping in sports - Physicians - Ethics

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Publication History

Issue published online: October 10, 2017
Manuscript accepted: September 13, 2017
Manuscript received: July 28, 2017

Cite this article as

Di Pietro B, Isidori E, Hadjstephanou CP, Di Gianfrancesco A, Pigozzi F. Sports medicine as an ethical practice: between protocol and interpretation. Med Sport 2017;70:261-5. DOI: 10.23736/S0025-7826.17.03181-7

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