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October 31, 1931


Author Affiliations

New Haven, Conn. Clinical Instructor in Proctology, Yale University School of Medicine.

JAMA. 1931;97(18):1319. doi:10.1001/jama.1931.02730180055026

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To the Editor:  —For a number of years the terms "Prokto-Sigmoskop" and "Prokto-Sigmoskopie" have been used by Strauss of Berlin. The first use of this term in a title by this author was in 1909 (Beiträge zur Sigmoskopie, Berl. klin. Wchnschr.46: 146, 1909; Ueber Indikationen und Kontraindikationen der Sigmoskopie, Deutsche med. Wchnschr.35: 2101, 1909). This usage has suggested the introduction of the terms "sigmoscope" and "sigmoscopy" for our own use when referring to the sigmoidoscope and the examination of the rectosigmoidal region.The word "sigmoid" is, of course, derived from the Greek letter sigma, the suffix "-oid" being added to denote that the part of the colon referred to is sigma, or S, shaped. Nevertheless, there seems to be no overwhelmingly good reason why this extra syllable should be retained in developing a word to designate the instrument for examining this region.In modifying the word "proctodeum," the

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