December 1969


Arch Intern Med. 1969;124(6):767. doi:10.1001/archinte.1969.00300220119026

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To the Editor.  —In the May issue of the Archives (123:598, 1969), Dr. Thompson regrets that modern developments in medicine are leaving that once-respected and significant term "hippus" (a state of pupillary unrest) unneeded, unemployed, and moribund. He suggests that, by virtue of its ancient and honorable history as well as its varied usages in the past, it will soon, rather than drop out, "take any meaning it can get." And in the same issue (p 599), Dr. Sullivan seems to feel that its phonetic relations to the current inlanguage scene should assure it a place.I agree. It seems quite obvious that no other word could so aptly fit our present epidemic type of adolescent pupillary unrest, with its new and distinguishing feature of hypertrichosis, now infecting our seats of learning.Let us, however, beware and be warned. If adopted, this new usage will surely lead next to "hippus

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