Maria Malatesta tries to demonstrate, using either legislative sources than grey letterature, that italian professional associations have not omogeneous functions, but are quite different among them. The reasons of that lie on the history of professions. Medical associations have a peculiar physionomy because, since now, they have solved trade unions functions, even if these functions were not established by a State law. The reason for this anomaly, recently remarked by the Antitrust Authority, can not be found only in the Fascist period, when associations were substituted by trade unions. More complex analysis must be carried
out. Specifically, the causes of such a situation are rooted in the birth of the Italian State, when doctors were subordinated to municipalities and medical associations tryed to shelter doctors from State’s control.