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January 1, 1968

The Sentinel Pile and Brodie

Author Affiliations

Charleston, SC

JAMA. 1968;203(1):56. doi:10.1001/jama.1968.03140010058020

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To the Editor:—  May I take this opportunity to compliment the editors of The Journal on publishing biographical sketches of outstanding persons who have made significant contributions to the progress of medicine.In The Journal (200:331, 1967) an excellent biographical flashback of the great London surgeon, Sir Benjamin Collins Brodie, stated that he "recognized the significance of the sentinel pile at the lower end of the fissure." However, Sir Benjamin Collins Brodie has not left a written description which in any way resembles the sentinel pile referred to by some of our present day writers. His lectures on anorectal diseases delivered at St. George's Hospital and published in the London Medical Gazette do not mention, by identification or description, a sentinel pile. Moreover, his clinical remarks on ulcers of the rectum delivered at St. George's Hospital and published in the London Medical and Surgical Journal mention no tissue to