Key–Hodgkin murmur: diastolic murmur of aortic regurgitation with a raspy quality, likened to the sound of ‘a saw cutting through wood‘. Hodgkin correlated the murmur with retroversion of the aortic valve leaflets seen post mortem.
Hodgkin and Key were contemporaries working in London, at Guy’s Hospital. Key is credited with first drawing Hodgkin’s attention to the problem of aortic incompetence. Hodgkin addressed this association in his open letters to Key which he read in February 1827 before the Hunterian Society
My Dear friend. Thou will probably recollect having pointed out to me, a few months ago, a particular state of the valves of the aorta, which, by admitting of their falling back towards the ventricle, unfits them for the performance of their functionHodgkin 1827
The impulse of the heart was not particularly feeble, but was considerably diffused; the sound very general over the whole left side, and nearly the whole of the right side of the chest, with the exception of the superior part of the chest. Each contraction appeared lengthened, accompanied with a purring, thrilling or sawing kind of noiseIn Hodgkin’s 1827 letter, as described by his friend J.H. Pickford.
- Hodgkin-Key sound
- Hodgkin-Key murmur
- Hodgkin T. On retroversion of the valves of the aorta. Lond Med Gaz 1829; 3: 433-43.
- Ma I, Tierney LM. Name that murmur–eponyms for the astute auscultician. N Engl J Med. 2010 Nov 25;363(22):2164-8.
- Robbins A, Zhang G. Name that murmur. LITFL 2019
myths behind the history