The contribution of cognitive bias toward diagnostic error has been well documented.1–7  Previous research exploring the effects of these cognitive pitfalls centers on examples from internal and emergency medicine, but it is fair to presume that pediatric hospitalists remain equally vulnerable to such cognitive error. To improve the overall awareness of cognitive bias within inpatient pediatrics, we present 2 cases that serve to illustrate some of the many cognitive biases a pediatrician may encounter in inpatient practice. We conclude with strategies to avoid the effects of cognitive bias on diagnostic accuracy.

A 3-year-old male with no significant medical history presented to the emergency department (ED) with 11 days of a limp and 10 days of fever. His review of systems was otherwise positive for intermittent abdominal pain, increased loose stool, and a 3-pound weight loss. On examination, he had no point tenderness or swelling or erythema...

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