Progressive Ophthalmology

Progressive Ophthalmology

AMERICAN JOURNAL OF OPHTHALMOLOGY PUBLISHED MONTHLY BY THE OPHTHALMIC PUBLISHING COMPANY EDITORIAL STAFF H. ROMMEL HILDRETH LAWRENCE T. POST, editor ...

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AMERICAN JOURNAL OF OPHTHALMOLOGY PUBLISHED MONTHLY BY THE OPHTHALMIC PUBLISHING COMPANY

EDITORIAL STAFF H. ROMMEL HILDRETH LAWRENCE T. POST, editor 824" Metropolitan building, St. Louis 524 Metropolitan building, Saint Louis WILLIAM H. CRISP, consulting editor PARK LEWIS 454 Franklin street, Buffalo 530 Metropolitan building, Denver M. URIBE TRONCOSO EDWARD JACKSON, consulting editor 350 West 85th street, New York 1120 Republic building, Denver M. F. WEYMANN HANS BARKAN 903 Westlake Professional building, Los Stanford University Hospital, San Fran­ Angeles cisco JOHN M. WHEELER HARRY S. GRADLE 30 West Fifty-ninth street, New York 58 East Washington street, Chicago Address original papers, other scientific communications including correspondence, also books for review and reports of society proceedings to Dr. Lawrence T. Post, 524 Metropolitan building, Saint Louis. Exchange copies of medical journals should be sent to Dr. William H. Crisp, 530 Metropolitan building, Denver. Subscriptions, applications for single copies, notices of change of address, and com­ munications with reference to advertising should be addressed to the manager of subscrip­ tions and advertising, 508 Metropolitan building, Saint Louis. Copy of advertisements must be sent to the manager by the fifteenth of the month preceding its appearance. Authors' proofs should be corrected and returned within forty-eight hours to the editor. Twenty-five reprints of each article will be supplied to the author without charge. Additional reprints may be obtained from the printer, the George Banta Publishing Com­ pany, 450-458 Ahnaip street, Menasha, Wisconsin, if ordered at the time proofs are re­ turned. But reprints to contain colored plates must be ordered when the article is accepted.

PROGRESSIVE OPHTHAL­ MOLOGY Three years ago a little arithmetic, as far as simple proportion, showed that an up-to-date textbook on ophthalmology, gave nine-tenths of its space to things that had not been imagined one hundred years ago. The progress of science, like the motion of a falling body, is continu­ ally faster and faster. The growth of the science and literature of ophthalmology illustrates this tendency. In the Novem­ ber number (p. 1081) the comparison of the textbooks of Fuchs and de Schweinitz with the first of Duke-Elder's three volumes calls attention to this growth. But this characteristic of the age in which we live is such a reversal of the relative importance of the old and new in our literature, that it must be em­ phasized before it can be appreciated, or even noticed. Volume 14 of the American Journal of Ophthalmology was larger than any of its predecessors. But the pressure for more space continues, notwithstanding the development of two other excellent

journals now published in English. This increasing volume of special literature was suggested by looking over the No­ vember issue of this journal. The first article commands attention to the appli­ cation for injuries of the eyeball, of a method of examination that has, in the last few years, revolutionized the locali­ zation of brain tumors. Next, the pro­ longed occlusion test for latent heterophoria was described by Dr. Marlow in Volume 4. It is particularly important to reveal the amount of hyperphoria. But only in the last two years has its liability to mislead the clinician, with reference to this form of imbalance, been brought to our attention ; and this issue of the Journal compels us to take it into account. The existence of ocular papillomata was brought out by Gayet in 1879 ; and in America by Ayres in 1891. But a gen­ eral roundup of various recorded cases, and the literature referring to them, ap­ pears in this issue. Then a case of gas bacillus infection with intraocular for­ eign body, calls attention to an emer154

EDITORIALS gency that most of us have never recog­ nized. The defects of the visual fields connected with endocrine disturbances have only claimed attention within the last ten years. Contact glasses have been before the profession since 1888; but only in the last five years has their prac­ tical importance received attention in our journals. The x-ray and radium have been extensively used about the eye, since these important therapeutic agents were discovered, but only in this November issue is the risk of causing cataract by radiation fairly estimated, by bringing together the clinical ex­ periences of our profession bearing on this point. The seven papers above referred to have bibliographies containing 129 ref­ erences. Of these only two go back to literature of more than 30 years ago. These illustrate the rapidity with which ophthalmic knowledge and ophthalmic art are extending ; but they do not tell the whole story. The 22 illustrations, in seven of the 11 original papers, carry information that makes the reading of the printed page more like the personal assistance of a good teacher. The edi­ torial on the prolonged occlusion test emphasizes the practical bearings of the information given in the paper. Most of the eight society proceedings report original cases. From one society come two cases of bilateral tear-gas injuries, and two of electric cataract; forms of injury that are becoming of great prac­ tical importance. The editorial department may not rank with the original articles, as to new ideas promulgated. But the five edi­ torials do give points of view and em­ phasis, that help shape the thinking of the ophthalmologist about his work. Such helps are needed by all isolated physicians and surgeons engaged in spe­ cial practice. Under correspondence we have information that will be of interest to every one who is thinking of attend­ ing the International Congress of Oph­ thalmology at Madrid. The book notices bring to our attention two really impor­ tant new books. The abstract department, with its ab­ stracts of 142 papers prepared by 17 workers, who are giving a large part of

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their time to critical reading of the 21 journals, from 13 different countries, that published the papers noticed, gives a broader picture. This again illustrates the rapid expansion of the knowledge of ophthalmology, and the necessity for its broad and systematic study, by every one who offers his services to a com­ munity ; as able to give people the bene­ fit of the present knowledge and re­ sources, of this special branch of medi­ cal practice. It is not enough thus to glance over the last issue, as we each day glance over the morning paper. When the De­ cember number comes with the annual index, the whole volume should be ar­ ranged, tied together, and marked with the year ; whether they are to be bound, or simply placed in order with other volumes on a closet shelf. The more profitable kind of reading: when a case suggests a particular subject, to use the indexes, to guide us promptly to all the later literature that bears upon it. From careful reading of this kind one may reach as sound judgments, as are possible from a large experience as one may hope to have, in a long professional life. The experience of the profession teaches more than the greatest possible experience of an individual. Edward Jackson.

INTERNATIONAL OPHTHAL­ MOLOGY The Annual Report of the Giza Me­ morial Laboratory for 1931 gives a brief account of an interesting ceremony which took place in that Laboratory, March 15, 1931. It was the unveiling of the bust to Mr. A. F. MacCallan, C.B.E., M.D., F.R.C.S., former Director of the Government Ophthalmic Hospitals of Egypt. The bust was presented by the Egyptian ophthalmic surgeons, trained by MacCallan during the twenty years he had served as Director of Ophthalmic Hospitals in Egypt, and "building up what is now the greatest state ophthal­ mic organization in the world". As Dr. Shahin Pasha, Secretary of Public Health, said in receiving the Memorial Bust : "The very fact that the ophthal-