Throckmorton sign, also known as John Thomas sign, refers to when the penis points in the direction of unilateral disease, typically of the pelvis or hip.
Throckmorton sign is a slang term used humorously by medical students and residents.
According to the first serious study of the sign published in 1988, the sign is less accurate than tossing a coin 3.
History and etymology
It is named after Thomas "Tom" Bentley Throckmorton (1885-1961), American neurologist and governor of the Iowa chapter of the American College of Physicians 2, not Governor of the State of Iowa, as is erroneously stated on several well-known websites!
- 1. Throckmorton's sign from whonamedit.com, the dictionary of medical eponyms. Throckmorton's sign
- 2. Tom Bentley Throckmorton from whonamedit.com, the dictionary of medical eponyms. Tom Bentley Throckmorton
- 3. Thomas MC, Lyons BD, Walker RJ. John Thomas sign: common distraction or useful pointer?. (1998) The Medical journal of Australia. 169 (11-12): 670. Pubmed