- A dictionary of medical eponyms

Pott's cancer

Related people

Coal tar-induced cancer of the skin particularly localized to the scrotum.

Description

Coal tar-induced cancer of the skin particularly localized to the scrotum. Pott established that the cause of this form of cancer was "a lodgement of soot in the rugae of the scrotum" – it was due to the soot ingrained into their skin by prolonged exposure to flue dusts. This was probably the first suggestion of the association of "substances" in the environment with the development of cancer in a particular occupational group. Although the conditions is sometimes called Pott's cancer, the term coined by himself, chimney-sweepers cancer, has replaced a justified eponym.

Bibliography

  • P. Pott:
    Chirurgical Observations Relative to the Cataract, the Polypus of the Nose, the Cancer of the Scrotum, the Different Kinds of Ruptures, and the Mortification of the Toes and Feet.
    London, 1775. German translation, Berlin, 1776.

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