[Skip to Navigation]
June 1968

Caldwell-Luc Operation 1952-1966

Author Affiliations

Oxford, England
From the Department of Otolaryngology, United Oxford Hospitals, Oxford, England.

Arch Otolaryngol. 1968;87(6):630-636. doi:10.1001/archotol.1968.00760060632016

THE HABIT of attaching personal names to anatomical structures, diseases, and operations is difficult to defend scientifically, but it is a convenience. A name sometimes avoids a lengthy descriptive phrase and often it has a mnemonic value. The foramen of Munro may be less descriptive than the interventricular foramen, but it has a rhythm about it and we are stimulated to inquire who Munro was. Similarly we prefer to talk about the Caldwell-Luc operation rather than the radical trans-buccal maxillo-rhinostomy. As an added advantage in this particular case, by using personal names we make it quite clear that we are not referring to the variants of antrostomy described by others such as Denker or Canfield.

But things are not always precisely what they seem and a man's name may become attached to something medical because he popularized it rather than because he was the first to describe it. Also, current

Add or change institution