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De Nucleis Pulposis

F. Schiller, MD
JAMA. 1965;192(8):727. doi:10.1001/jama.1965.03080210071031.
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To the Editor:—  In "Closer Look at Spinal Lesions," by Nagel et al, Yale University School of Medicine (JAMA191:975-978 [March 22] 1965) the term "nucleus pulposa" is used consistently. This makes one wonder about the role and the background of the editors—no doubt more than one—at work in this case, and editors in general. Nucleus is neither woman, tree, city, country, nor island. Nearly every one except the authors and editors of this paper (so graphically pointing out the dangers of spinal biopsy) knows, without requiring "closer look" at a dictionary, that nucleus (pulposus) is masculine. Imagine "nucleus rubra" or "nigra" or "caudata"! With hurt surprise do we see this emasculate pulp Latin emanate from Yale. What next? An annulus fibrosa closing in on that once virile nucleus of learning?


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