The scientific and the medical communities are among the first asked both to advance highly specialized knowledge and to make it available to a wider community of users, accessing specialized knowledge and searching for single pieces of information for a whole variety of purposes that require diverse information needs and demands. Health advisors may want to update progress in research in a certain field of medicine, to ask experts the right kinds of questions and, even more fundamentally, to be able to describe those health problems they may encounter in their patients’ community with words and expressions that can be both understandable and accurate.
Researchers, physicians and nurses all face the need to share information that comes out of stabilized, or established, research, meaning research that has been accurately tested as opposed to new and untested assumptions, and to thus establish a common code. A common code may be used by experts in the field to communicate, exchange and compare results and to translate some of the results into common sensebased explanations that can be made widely available. In order to circulate new discoveries and highly specialized knowledge in medicine and to disseminate it to a larger community, accurate planning of consistent metaphors and analogies are of crucial help.
Accurate metaphors and analogies come as a result of a skilled art and science; no metaphor or analogy can represent a specific topic within a highly specialized knowledge domain without having first undergone major processes of redefinition. This is precisely what will be explored in this chapter, the added value of both powerful and reliable conceptual tools in the medical field, such as metaphors and analogies, and a commonly shared code to make qualitative reasoning about medical information possible. To improve progress in research and medical care, everyone needs to establish a common language to work with and from. In terms of medical advice documentation, the use of a visual system, CTML, would be instrumental in providing and documenting information. This system can be understood by and thus connect researchers, health care professionals, and patients.