Musing of a Contemporary Pathologist
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Three long steps to Montpelier

Montpelier, the capital of Vermont, is a small, surprisingly vibrant city in the middle of the state, between Burlington and Woodstock. The north branch of the Winooski River runs right under State Street and also under some of the buildings lining the north side of that thoroughfare. There are three warm and inviting, well-stocked bookstores in town – my favorite is Bear Pond, partly because it is the...

Medical Trivia #2: Cyrano de Bergerac and microscopy

In 1897 the French poet and dramatist, Edmond Eugène Alexis Rostand (1868-1918) wrote what would be his most popular work, the romantic play Cyrano de Bergerac. Rostand was born in Marseille and his father was a renowned economist and poet. Rostand studied literature, philosophy and history at the Collège Stanislas in Paris. Initially devoted to writing comedies, in mid-career he wrote a number of serious plays,...

Laufer’s Rules with Comments

Igor Laufer (1944-2010) was a distinguished, renowned and beloved gastrointestinal radiologist at the University of Pennsylvania, largely responsible for the development and refinement of double-contrast barium studies of the GI tract. Igor and I first met in the early 1980’s at a conference devoted to inflammatory bowel diseases where I was chairing a multispecialty (e.g., surgeons, gastroenterologists,...

Medical Trivia #1: Sutton’s Law

There are many “laws” in science reflecting past observations and scientific proofs that have been shown to be either completely true or at least highly reliable. Many of these laws bear someone’s name. Some required understanding of complex scientific principles or refined mathematical reasoning to develop. Sutton’s law, in contrast, is based on logic, common sense and experience. In high school physics...