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To the Editor.—The October 1976 issue of the Archives addressed in editorial and epistolary fashion the desirability of proper use of language. These praiseworthy admonitions may have honed my grammatical sensibility, for when I read the article "Autosomal Recessive Retinitis Pigmentosa and Coats Disease," published in the same issue, I detected a number of syntactic errors that might be worth calling to your attention.
In the "Comment" section of this interesting article, we are informed that "retinitis pigmentosa and coats disease" have "existed" in the ophthalmic literature and occurred in "the same individual," albeit in the latter instance, infrequently. I submit that the authors intended to say the reports of the two conditions "exist" in the literature or "have been published." I am well aware that these diseases have occurred or even existed in a human being, but I can't bring myself to believe that one of my favorite
Hills K. Syntactic Errors. Arch Ophthalmol. 1977;95(1):169-170. doi:10.1001/archopht.1977.04450010169029