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To the Editor:
—May I call your attention to page 707 of the book Hawaii, by James Michener? When the Japanese boy Goro is given a test in English, the teacher tears a paper in half and asks: "What did I do to the paper?" His answer "You broke it" causes him to flunk out.The same applies to the term "retinal break," which is but a rather loose translation of a word such as "Netzhautbruch." However, the English word "break" is not the equivalent of "Bruch" (German) and is therefore incorrect English when applied as above. It cannot be applied to the retina any more than to a skirt or stocking. Furthermore, the term "Bruch" is also used to denote "hernia," and I doubt very much that American surgeons could be persuaded to use the term "inguinal break."
Schillinger RJ. WATCH YOUR LANGUAGE. Arch Ophthalmol. 1961;65(6):908. doi:10.1001/archopht.1961.01840020910028