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Definition of Differential diagnosis

Differential diagnosis: The process of weighing the probability of one disease versus that of other diseases possibly accounting for a patient's illness. The differential diagnosis of rhinitis (a runny nose) includes allergic rhinitis (hayfever), the abuse of nasal decongestants and, of course, the common cold.

Source: MedTerms™ Medical Dictionary
http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=2991
Last Editorial Review: 8/28/2013

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