ACP publishes 'Medicine in Quotations,' second edition

Views of Health and Disease Through the Ages

PHILADELPHIA -- (March 28, 2006) "Quotations can serve as cheaply acquired badges of erudition, but they have better uses for most of us," say Edward J. Huth, MD, and T. Jock Murray, MD, co-editors of "Medicine in Quotations: Views of Health and Disease Through the Ages," second edition, published by the American College of Physicians. According to Drs. Huth and Murray, the most important use of their collection of quotes is seeing what views -- of physicians and patients, of diseases and treatments -- were held in other times and places.

In reviewing 5,000 quotations for the final 3,500 that would become the second edition, Drs. Huth and Murray found that some medical concepts and practices have developed and changed over time, yet some have stayed remarkably constant. "Cultures change through time, but human nature probably changes little," they write in the book's introduction.

The second edition has more than 450 new quotations. Drs. Huth and Murray, in addition to maintaining their own quotation collections and searching for more, accepted many contributions from colleagues in the United States and abroad. The quotations are organized by topic and fully referenced to their original sources. There are also author and subject indices to assist the reader.

Drs. Huth and Murray will sign copies of their book during the American College of Physicians 2006 Annual Session, to be held in Philadelphia April 6-8 at the Pennsylvania Convention Center. Dr. Murray is the event's opening speaker. He will present his address "Professionalism: Use It or Lose It" on Thurs., April 6, at 9:30 a.m. in Hall C of the Pennsylvania Convention Center. Drs. Huth and Murray will sign copies of their book on Fri., April 7, from 3:45 to 4:30 p.m. at Exhibit Hall booth number 927.

Edward J. Huth, MD, MACP, FRCP (London), is Editor Emeritus of the Annals of Internal Medicine, which he edited for 19 years. Long known as the "Dean of American Medical Editors," he is the author of Writing and Publishing in Medicine, has written numerous chapters and articles on medical publishing, and is co-author of SI Units for Clinical Measurement. He reviews books on medical history for several major journals.

T. Jock Murray, MD, MACP, is Professor Emeritus at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia and former Chairman of the Board of Regents of the American College of Physicians. His books include Multiple Sclerosis: The History of a Disease, and three books on the treatment of multiple sclerosis. In addition, he has written numerous articles on medical history and has contributed to several textbooks.

"Medicine in Quotations" is available from the American College of Physicians. Ordering information is available at Or contact the ACP Customer Service Department at [email protected]; or phone 215-351-2600 (M-F, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. ET). The ACP product number is 330351040; ISBN 1-930513-67-4. List price is $52.00; ACP members pay $47.00. The hardcover book has 350 pages.


ACP (Doctors of Internal Medicine. Doctors for Adults.(R)) is the largest medical-specialty organization and second-largest physician group in the United States. Membership includes more than 119,000 internists, related subspecialists, medical students, residents and fellows. Internists specialize in the prevention, detection and treatment of illnesses in adults.

The American College of Physicians was founded in 1915 to promote the science and practice of medicine. In 1998 it merged with the American Society of Internal Medicine, which was established in 1956 to study economic aspects of medicine. ACP works to enhance the quality and effectiveness of health care by fostering excellence and professionalism in the practice of medicine. Its publishing program includes the journal Annals of Internal Medicine, electronic products, and books for the medical community and general reader. For more information, visit

A sampling of quotes from "Medicine in Quotations: Views of Health and Disease Through the Ages," second edition

"The physician is Nature's assistant." Galen [130-200]

"All mushrooms are edible, but some only once." Croatian Proverb

"Don't misinform your Doctor nor your Lawyer." Benjamin Franklin, 1737

"The first symptoms perceived are, a slight sense of weakness, with a proneness to trembling in some particular part; sometimes in the head, but most commonly in one of the hands and arms ..." James Parkinson, 1817

"The diagnosis of disease is often easy, often difficult, and often impossible" Peter Mere Latham, 1878

"A species of penicillium produces in culture a very powerful antibacterial substance which affects different bacteria in different degrees.... The name 'penicillin' has been given to filtrates of both cultures of the mould." Alexander Fleming, 1929

"To the typical physician, my illness is a routine incident in his rounds, while for me it's the crisis of my life. I would feel better if I had a doctor who at least perceived this incongruity." Anatole Broyard, 1992

"The sad truth is that our trillion-dollar medical care system seems to feel that time spent with patients is a luxury it simply can't afford." Frank Davidoff, 1997

Last updated: 30 Apr 2016
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 30 Apr 2016
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