1

I need some explanation to fully grasp the differences between the following two:

  1. the guidelines suggest a confirmed diagnosis before initiation of the treatment
  2. the guidelines suggest a confirmed diagnosis before the initiation of the treatment.

Both seem correct to me (are they?) but I feel there are some subtleties that I cannot fully grasp (an illusion?).

Any help?

1

Both are correct.

It's an instance where there are only slight differences among the constructions and where interpretation of the nuances may well differ.

The first option is:

the guidelines suggest a confirmed diagnosis before initiation of the treatment

which implies any initiation of treatment, that a specific treatment is recommended and is written (without the first the) in a tighter style, more likely to be used by the medical profession;

Your second suggestion:

the guidelines suggest a confirmed diagnosis before the initiation of the treatment.

is just more fully written out and suggests that a start for the treatment is already in prospect; it also suggests that a specific treatment is recommended.

but there is no difference in meaning.

The other option, which you have not suggested, is:

the guidelines suggest (a) confirmed diagnosis before initiation of treatment.

omitting both uses of the, which sounds more like typical medical shorthand and leaves open which treatment might be recommended.

|improve this answer|||||

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.