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gold standardJoe Segen2016-12-12T23:53:46+00:00
Any standardised clinical test, tool or intervention of proven validity and reliability which is held as the best available, against which new tests, tools or interventions are compared.
A gold standard (GS) is loosely equivalent to a standard of care. It may be delineated in standard textbooks and has withstood the test of time. Deviation from GSs without justification may constitute malpractice, potentially forcing a physician to adhere “to the book”, even though he might believe that a newer therapy is appropriate–e.g., the X-ray venography for diagnosing DVT is regarded as a GS, although the diagnosis may be established using radionuclide venography, liquid crystal thermography, ultrasonography, and impedance plethysmography. Laparoscopic cholecystectomy has been anointed with the GS seal of approval. With the increasing momentum of evidence-based medical practice, this dilemma may disappear.
Synonyms Criterion standard, definitive standard, reference standard