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Medical Terminology Daily (MTD) is a blog sponsored by Clinical Anatomy Associates, Inc. as a service to the medical community, medical students, and the medical industry. We post anatomical, medical or surgical terms, their meaning and usage, as well as biographical notes on anatomists, surgeons, and researchers through the ages. Be warned that some of the images used depict human anatomical specimens.

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A Moment in History 

Martin Naboth, title page of De Sterelitate Mulierum 

Martin Naboth
(1675 – 1721)

Not much is known about this German physician and anatomist. He was born in 1675 in Calau, a town in Southern Brandenburg, Germany. He studied medicine at the University in Leipzig, receiving his doctorate in Philosophy in 1701 and his MD in 1703. Although his interests were based in chemistry, Naboth became an avid anatomist, with interest in the anatomy of the female reproductive system.

His main publication in 1707 was “De Sterilitate Mulierum” (On Sterility in Women). In this book he refers to small pearl-like transparent structures found in the uterine cervix. Believing that he had discovered the way women store eggs, he called these “ovarium novum” (new ovaries). His discovery was accepted by many and these structures came to be known as “Ovula Nabothii “. Only later were to understand these structures as cysts created by clogging of the opening of the glands found around the uterine cervix. These mucus-producing glands are known as the [cervical glands] and also as Nabothian glands. These cysts, which are common and do not represent a sign of cervical cancer, are known today as Nabothian cysts.

Naboth had only rediscovered these cysts first described in 1681 by Guillaume des Noues (1650 – 1735), although the eponym records Naboth’s name.

Naboth died in Leipzig in 1721 leaving a large anatomical collection. We have not been able to find an image of Naboth, so we are depicting the title page of his 1707 “De Sterilitate Mulierum”. If you click on the image you can see a larger depiction.

Sources
1. “Histoire de la M?decine, depuis son origine jusqu'au dix-neuvi?me si?cle” A. J. L. Jourdan ; E. F. M. Bosquillon  1815
2. “The Origin of Medical Terms” Skinner HA 1970 Hafner Publishing Co.


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Hernia

UPDATED: The definition of hernia is "the protrusion of a deep structure through a superficial weakness of defect".

Herniation has many etiologies, but in all cases a weakness of a superficial containing wall  (usually layered) or a normal or abnormal opening (defect) must be present. A true hernia usually has a deep sac or hernia sac which contains the herniated viscus or viscera. Repair of a hernia is called a hernioplasty or a herniorrhaphy.

Although with exceptions, a herniation with only weakening of the walls and no hernia sac can be called a "prolapse", the suffix for prolapse (or hernia sometimes) is [-ocele].

Indirect inguinal hernia
• Omphalocele: From the Greek [omphalos] meaning "umbilicus", an omphalocele is a herniation through the umbilicus.
• Cystourethocele: A prolapse of the urinary bladder and urethra with a weakened vaginal wall

There are also "internal' hernias, between bodily compartments. Examples are:

Esophageal hiatus hernia: Known as a "hiatal hernia", this hernia is a protrusion of a peritoneal sac with abdominal visceral content into the thorax.
Perineal hernia: The protrusion of abdominopelvic content into the perineal region through a defect in the pelvic diaphragm (levator ani)

A hernia is usually named for the superficial region where it protrudes. An example of this would be a femoral hernia, which starts as an abdominopelvic extrusion, but it ends protruding in the area of the thigh (femoral region). Abdominal or ventral hernias are named according to the abdominal region through which they protrude.

in older times the word "rupture" was used as a synonym for "hernia", as can be seen in a letter written by Dr. Ephraim McDowell in 1829. The image shows an example of an indirect inguinal hernia. 

Original Image courtesy of: nih.gov