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May 16, 1959

Obstetric and Gynecologic Milestones: Essays in Eponymy

JAMA. 1959;170(3):393-394. doi:10.1001/jama.1959.03010030137039

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Most of the chapters in this delightful book are devoted to one historic person. The sections deal with anatomic parts and landmarks; measurements; clinical signs, tests, and rules; phenomena of pregnancy and labor; bacteria; ovarian tumors; syndromes; positions, instruments, and operations; and therapeutic procedures. It is well indexed. Every obstetrician and gynecologist should be delighted by the book, both for its historic value and as a reference work. There are many original illustrations and portraits. From the beginning of history men's names have become part of our language, often to the point where they are spelled with small letters. Every science and art contains these eponyms, which are a tribute to the men involved. The author states that the use of proper names in anatomy has long been disputed, and in 1855 a commission could not agree and compromised by allowing their retention in brackets after the objective Latin names.

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