- A dictionary of medical eponyms

Georges Hayem

Born  1841
Died  1933

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French physician and haematologist, born November 25, 1841, Paris; died 1933.

Biography of Georges Hayem

Georges Hayem was born in Paris and studied in that city. He became intern in 1862, doctor of medicine in 1868, agrégé and médecin des hôpitaux in 1872. He was professor of therapeutics and materia medica from 1879 and held the chair of clinical medicine from 1893 until his retirement in 1911. He was physician at the Hôpital Tenon 1878-1911, later at Hôpital St.-Antoine.

From 1886 member of the Académie de Médecine. He wrote many concours theses and in 1877 won a prize for his book on muscular atrophies.

Hayem was one of the founders of haematology. He named the haematoblast and the acromacyt, and wrote on digestion, the stomach and cholera and described goat’s milk anaemia in 1889. He also did pioneer work with platelets, introducing the first accurate platelet counts. However, he is most known for his solution used for counting erythrocytes. He also made a classic description of chronic interstitial hepatitis and also described acquires haemolytic jaundice.

He was said to have saved 30% of his patients in the cholera epidemic by giving them an isotonic saline solution to combat the dehydration and was later nicknamed Dr. Cholera. His textbook on haematology in 1900 was widely read.

In 1872 he founded the Revue des sciences médicales en France et à l’étranger.


  • Sur les diverses formes d’encéphalite. Paris, 1868.
  • Des bronchites. Paris, 1869.
  • Des hémorragies intrarachidiennes. Paris, 1872.
  • Contribution à l’étude de l’hépatite interstitielle chronique avec hypertrophie (sclérose ou cirrhose hypertrophique du foie).
    Archives de physiologie normale et pathologique, Paris, 1874, 2 sér., 1: 126-157.
  • Recherches sur l’anatomie pathologique des atrophies musculaires. Paris, 1877.
  • Recherches sur l’anatomie normale et pathologique du sang. Paris, 1878.
  • Recherches sur l’évolution des hématies dans le sang de l’homme et des vertébrés.
    Archives de physiologie normale et pathologique, Paris, 1878, 5: 692-734.
    First accurate counts of the blood platelets.
  • Leçons sur les modifications du sang sous l’influence des agents médicamenteux et des pratiques thérapeutiques.
    Paris, 1882.
  • Traitement de choléra. Paris, 1885.
  • Leçons de thérapeutique. Paris, 1887-1893.
  • Du sang et de ses altérations anatomiques.
    Paris, G. Masson, 1889.
  • Du chimisme stomacal. With J. Winter. Paris, 1891.
  • Maladies de l’estomac. With G. Lion.
    In: Traité de médecine, Paris, 1895; 2nd edition, 1913.
  • Leçons cliniques sur les maladies du sang. Paris, 1900.
  • Les évolutions pathologiques de la digestion stomacale.
    Paris, 1907.
  • L’hématoblaste, troisième élément du sang.
    Paris, Presse univ. de France, 1923.
    Hayem first named the haematoblasts in 1877 (Mém Soc biol, Paris, 1877, 29: 97). His view, reiterated in 1923, was that they were the early stages of red blood cells and regenerated the blood. Pages 614-751 contain an important account of chlorosis. Hayem, by his accurate observation, placed knowledge of the disease on a firm basis.

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