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BMJ 2001; 322 doi: (Published 16 June 2001) Cite this as: BMJ 2001;322:1498

Medical journals had their knuckles rapped in the latest issue of The Pantaneto Forum, an online journal that promotes debate on communication in science ( By using language that promotes infertility as a technical problem, with the doctor and the fetus as the two main actors, the author of “The Invisible Female Patient” argues that parents have been left outside the realm of the medical experience. He says that patient-friendly vocabulary should replace medical jargon.

A total of 192 Minerva readers took advantage of the offer to redistribute some of their information overload by passing on their medical journals to the Postgraduate Medical Academy in St Petersburg in 1998. The scheme continues to flourish, delivering over 3 tonnes of reading matter each year, and now includes the Military Medical Academy with its medical school. The annual delivery will take place in September. For more details contact Sheila Lemoine in Manchester (tel +44(0)161 865 6227).

Drug permeability through skin is best tested by using human skin as a model membrane. Failing that, shed snakeskin is the next best thing because of its similarity to human stratum corneum. Investigating the …

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