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December 5, 1936

STYLE IN MEDICAL WRITING

JAMA. 1936;107(23):1909-1910. doi:10.1001/jama.1936.02770490063024

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Abstract

To the Editor:—  The communication of Dr. Fayette E. Reed in The Journal of October 31 in criticism of style in medical writing appealed to me. I must, however, make one reservation; that is the last paragraph. I read the article with glowing approval, and then came up against the ending that "if this strikes a responsive chord in your anatomy it is a sure sign that you are over 45 years of age." I feel some resentment— as if something were put over on me; it was not quite fair to get a man to commit himself and then use it against him.All the same I would like to support his gentle criticisms. I sympathize with him in his feeling about words which suddenly become fashionable, like "meticulous" and "evaluate," and phrases such as "per se" and "sine qua non," and then are used so much that they

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