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 Trivia: Animal Kingdom

We learnt Couching from Animals

It has been speculated that couching procedure of a cataract had been copied from animals. According to the literature of ancient times, when a goat notices that its vision has become cloudy, it will go to a special bush and then pierce its eyes with a thorn. Fluid will escape, but the pupil remains intact and the goat will immediately see again. This was told by Claudius Aelianus (around AD 222) and is mentioned in one of the manuscripts of the Galen.

Journal Matters !

Behçet’s disease is named after the Turkish dermatologist Dr Hulusi Behçet (1889–1948), who in 1937 described it.  Behçet published his report in one of the most widely read dermatologic journals of that time, Dermatologische Wochenschrift. Six years before that, a Greek ophthalmologist, Benedictos Adamantiades, had reported a patient with the same disorder, but regrettably, in the less widely read French ophthalmological literature. Thus the disease became widely known as Behçet’s disease throughout most of the world. Ideally we should use the term Adamantiades–Behçet’s Disease .

Zinnia & Zinn

Johann Gottfried Zinn (December 6, 1727 – April 6, 1759) was a German anatomist and botanist .He was the director of the Botanic garden of the University of Göttingen  and professor in the medical faculty.He had described many ocular structures and these are known with  the eponymes like zonule of Zinn, annulus of Zinn etc. The flower Zinnia is named in honour of him.

Only recipient of Nobel in Ophthalmology

Allvar Gullstrand (5 June 1862, – 28 July 1930) a Swedish ophthalmologist,is the only recipient of Nobel prize in Ophthalmology

Enigma of Syphilis

Syphilis was initially called the great pox.The name “syphilis” was originated from the title character of a poem written in 1530 by the Veronese physician and poet Girolamo Fracastoro.

Reiter Syndrome

The name "Reiter’s syndrome", named after the German physician Hans Conrad Julius Reiter. He reported a German Lieutenant with non-gonococcal urethritis, arthritis and uveitis. However it was not him,who first describe this syndrome. The triad was reported by Feissinger & Leroy, and Sir Benjamin Collins Brodie separately.Reiter was a member of Nazi party  and convicted of forced human experimentation in the Buchenwald concentration camp. during the Second World War, Hans Reiter designed typhus inoculation experiments that killed more than 250 prisoners at concentration camps in Buchenwald. After the war, he was arrested by the Red Army in Soviet Union-occupied Germany and tried at Nuremberg, where he was found guilty and interned at an American prisoner-of-war camp. In 1977, a group of doctors began a campaign for the term "Reiter's Syndrome" to be abandoned and renamed "reactive arthritis".

Panush RS, Wallace DJ, Dorff RE, Engleman EP. Retraction of the suggestion to use the term "Reiter's syndrome" sixty-five years later: the legacy of Reiter, a war criminal, should not be eponymic honor but rather condemnation. Arthritis Rheum. 2007 Feb;56(2):693-4. Free Download


Ophthalmologist President

Bashar Hafez al-Assad,current President of Syria is an ophthalmologist.