Talk by Sara Diani: “Complex systems and clinical medicine: do they have fitting points?”

Date and time: Friday, May 8, 11.30 am.

Location: Carlos Santamaría Building, Room B14

Speaker: Sara Diani (Lahnhöhe Zentrum, Lahnstein, Germany)

Title: Complex systems and clinical medicine: do they have fitting points?

Abstract: In the clinical practice we approach diseases with a linear logic, not a complex one, focusing us on a little part of the organism, ignoring what happens in the other compartments. Anytime we try to treat a disease, we make several attempts because we don’t have a unifying and logical model that can help us to define a rational method. Our empiricism would need a consequent rational analysis of it, in order to properly analyze the results.

In other words, except for the studies done by the philosophers of medicine, we do not use a clear model of what is health and what is disease. To this aim the connection between philosophical and theoretical systemic approach to our body and its reactions, the science of complex systems, the study about networks and the “field discipline” in physics, and finally the clinical practice has been here explored.

A new model of interaction between body, environment and disease, by using the latest theories of physics and biology, and the concept of heuristic learning (based on the event and error) is proposed. The disease is triggered by environmental information (except for the genetic ones), and it is an active process, performed through the individual characteristics. Through heuristic learning the system develops its own “best response” to the information in that moment. This will follow the rules of the live organism: to maintain low entropy, the best order possible, and to use the least energy.

This idea has a central role in defining and treating the diseases.

The ratio between medical and biological paradigms with a systemic and holistic perspective could allow us to revolutionize the cures for the patient, to do more effective research to understand deeply the results with the final goal of a new, higher and wider level of medicine.