Thomas Cooley

Thomas Benton Cooley (1871 - 1945)

Thomas Benton Cooley (1871 – 1945) was an American pediatrician and haematologist.


  • Born 1871
  • Died 1945

Medical Eponyms

Cooley Anemia (1925)

[aka *thalassemia major; erythroblastic anemia]

The term ‘thalassemia’ was coined in 1932 by George Hoyt Whipple (1878-1976) of the University of Rochester in Rochester, New York. The term is derived from the Greek words ‘thalassa’ (Θάλασσα) meaning ‘sea’ and the suffix -aima (αίμα) or ‘blood,’ denoting the high prevalence of the disorder in people originating from the Mediterranean and Black Seas.

Cooley had described a clinical entity, and it may be wise to use his name to distinguish this disease. We do not like the term “erythroblastic anemia” used by Cooley, as there is nothing especially characteristic about this feature of the blood. The disease is limited almost wholly to Italians, Greeks and Syrians, i. e., to the people originating about the Mediterranean Sea. For this reason the term “thalassemia,” derived from the Greek Θάλασσα , meaning the great sea and used to designate the Mediterranean, may have an appeal.

GH Whipple , WL Bradford. 1932: 364

Major Publications




BA MA (Oxon) MBChB (Edin) FACEM FFSEM. Emergency physician, Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital.  Passion for rugby; medical history; medical education; and asynchronous learning #FOAMed evangelist. Co-founder and CTO of Life in the Fast lane | Eponyms | Books | Twitter |

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