Other Known Aliases – rectal shelf
Definition – shelf-like tumor of the anterior rectal wall (Pouch of Douglas) felt on rectal examination
Clinical Significance – palpation of this “shelf” indicates implantation metastases from primary abdominal malignancy
History – Names after George Blumer (1872-1962), who was an English-American physician and recieved his medical doctorate from the Cooper Medical College (forerunner of Stanford’s medical school) in 1891. He would go onto to train under William Halstead and William Osler at Johns Hopkins Hospital at house officer. In 1906, he became professor of medicine at Yale culminating in Dean of the medical school from 1910-1920. It was during this tenure (1909) when he described his eponymous finding in an article entitled “Rectal shelf: neglected rectal sign of value in diagnosis of obscure malignant and inflammatory disease within the abdomen”.
- Firkin BG and Whitwirth JA. Dictionary of Medical Eponyms. 2nd ed. New York, NY; Parthenon Publishing Group. 1996.
- Bartolucci S, Forbis P. Stedman’s Medical Eponyms. 2nd ed. Baltimore, MD; LWW. 2005.
- Yee AJ, Pfiffner P. (2012). Medical Eponyms (Version 1.4.2) [Mobile Application Software]. Retrieved http://itunes.apple.com.
- Whonamedit – dictionary of medical eponyms. http://www.whonamedit.com
- Up To Date. www.uptodate.com
- Blumer G. Rectal shelf: neglected rectal sign of value in diagnosis of obscure malignant and inflammatory disease within the abdomen. Albany Medical Annals. 1909;30:361-366.
- Haubrich WS. Blumer of Blumer’s Shelf. Gastroenterology. 2000;118(1):30