Producer 'Dino de Laurentiis (I)' refused join the production because according to him any Italian would go to a theater to see a movie about doctors and diseases. The movie had the record at the Italian box office in 1968 beating Kubrik's 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) and Leone's Once Upon a Time in the West (1968).
When the Giuseppe D'Agata novel came out, the Italian Physician Order (Ordine dei Medici) filed a complaint against the author and lost the lawsuit. The same thing happened when first the movie came out.
In 2008, the film was selected to enter the list of the 100 Italian films to be saved (100 film italiani da salvare). The list was created with the aim to report "100 films that have changed the collective memory of the country between 1942 and 1978". The project was established by the Venice Days ("Giornate degli Autori") in the Venice Film Festival, in collaboration with Cinecittà Holding and with the support of the Ministry of Cultural Heritage.