Rudolf Virchow proceeded to rebuild pathology by stating a physiological definition of disease and by introducing the cell theory. To him, disease is a phenomenon of life and must be studied in relation to life processes. He therefore undertook researches in pathological physiology which he hoped might prove of therapeutic value.
These researches were based on a scientific methodology combining critical observation and experiment with an equally cautious and critical employment of working hypotheses. This article presents methodological and epistemological dimensions pertaining to Virchow's scientific approach to medicine, which formulate the standards of our present-day medical methodology.