hemophilia
Posted: 30 August 2010 12:27 PM   [ Ignore ]
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Happydog started me thinking about this with “logophilia”.

Etymonline says the word hemophilia was coined by a German physician in the 19th century. I am puzzled at the doctor’s choice of roots. Perhaps he knew a bleeder who enjoyed bleeding.....perhaps he studied at a university where Latin and Greek were no longer top priorities for doctors to study, and simply got it wrong. Wikipedia also mentions “hemorrhaphilia” as an early name. Wouldn’t something like “hemorrhea” or “hematorrhea” (I’m no classicist - Greek is Greek to me) have been a more appropriate choice? Why -"philia"?

Has anyone here got a notion why Dr. Schoenlein might have chosen this name? And why other physicians should have taken to it so readily (or did anyone object, or suggest some other name?).  There may be a perfectly simple reasonable explanation, and if so, I’d like to know it.

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Posted: 30 August 2010 12:48 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Wikipedia claims:

The term “haemophilia” is derived from the term “haemorrhaphilia” which was used in a description of the condition written by Friedrich Hopff in 1828, while he was a student at the University of Zurich.[28][31]

Their source for the claim of the original longer name appears to be citation 28, a Swedish article whose English abstract says:

The term, haemophilia, originated with a German, Friedrich Hopff (1828), who coined the name “haemorrhaphilia” which was later abbreviated to haemophilia.

However, citation 31, an online history of hemophilia at the World Hemophilia Foundation website gives the title of Hopff’s article as Über die haemophilie oder die erbliche Anlage zu todlichen Blutungen (On haemophila or the hereditary predisposition to lethal bleeding), which would seem to cast doubt on “later” and makes me wonder if Hopff used the longer form at all, or if the Swedish article was written by one of those people who assume that what ought to be must be.

Edit: I just noticed the Hopff vs Schönlein discrepancy. Apparently Hopff was a student of Schönlein and the latter is generally credited with the name.  I wonder if Hopff wanted to call it haemorrhaphilia and Schönlein insisted on the less logical name. I’ve had supervisors like that.

[ Edited: 30 August 2010 02:01 PM by Dr. Techie ]
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Posted: 30 August 2010 02:35 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Very odd.  There is an article by KM Brinkhous, “A Short History of Hemophilia, with Some Comments on the Word ‘Hemophilia,’” in Handbook of Hemophilia, edited by KM Brinkhous and HC Hemker (American Elsevier, New York, 1975); if anyone has access to it, it might shed some light.  Google Books has only the damnable snippet view.

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Posted: 30 August 2010 03:14 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Gotta leave in a minute, but see this Googlebooks page

Apparently, haemorrhaphilia was used by Schönlein later (in 1837).  The comment in the footnote is delicious, but I don’t have time to transcribe it for those whose view of this page may be blocked, sorry.

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Posted: 30 August 2010 09:48 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Do we have a kind soul who’s willing and able to type it out?

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Posted: 31 August 2010 03:21 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Hæmorrphaphilia is the name used by Schönlein in his Vorlesungen (third ed., 1837.) Virchow (Handb. d. spec. Path. und Ther. i. 264,) seems to think that Schönlein was the author of the word hæmophilia. I am unable to say from my own observation by what writer the name was first used. Die Hämophilie is said to be the title of an inaugural dissertation by Hopf, at Würzburg, in 1828. The word is so barbarous and senseless that it is not wonderful that no one should be proud of it.

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