Miller Fisher

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This article is about the scientist. For the Miller-Fisher syndrome, see Guillain-Barré syndrome.

Charles Miller Fisher, usually known as C. Miller Fisher (December 5, 1913, Waterloo, Ontario – April 14, 2012, Albany, New York) was a pioneering neurologist.[1][2] Trained in Canada, he spent 1949 at Massachusetts General Hospital, followed by several years in Montreal. In 1954 he returned to Massachusetts General on the stroke service, beginning a long career in stroke neurology.[3] In 1956 he reported the variant of Guillain–Barré syndrome that now carries his name.[4] Fisher was the recipient of the Royal College of Physicians of Canada's Prize in Medicine in 1952, and entered the Canadian Medical Hall of Fame in 1998. Fisher is credited with describing the clinical syndrome of the transient ischemic attack ("mini-stroke"). [1] Fisher proved, by a series of pathological studies, the relationship between stroke and the formation of blood clots in the heart in patients with atrial fibrillation. He also showed the relationship between stroke and carotid artery stenosis, which made preventive surgery possible and greatly reduced the incidence of subsequent strokes.[1]] He was a founder of Massachusetts General Hospital Stroke Service. Fisher is the namesake of the Harvard Neurology Residency Program at Massachusetts General Hospital.[citation needed] He contributed greatly towards the current use of anticoagulants for stroke prevention in atrial fibrillation.[3]

He contributed greatly to the understanding of stroke, more specifically carotid artery disease[1][3] and lacunar infarcts and their syndromes. With regards to the lacunar syndromes he described the concept,[5] the "pure motor stroke",[6] the "pure sensory stroke",[7] and the mechanism underlying the different stroke syndromes.[8][9][10] He made a number of contributions to the understanding of cervical artery dissection (carotid artery dissection and vertebral artery dissection) in the 1970s,[3] and that of subarachnoid hemorrhage due to cerebral aneurysms.[3]

Fisher also developed the Miller Fisher test used in the diagnosis of normal pressure hydrocephalus.[citation needed]


  1. ^ a b c d Estol CJ (March 1996). "Dr C. Miller Fisher and the history of carotid artery disease". Stroke 27 (3): 559–66. doi:10.1161/01.str.27.3.559. PMID 8610329. 
  2. ^ "HMS Professor C. Miller Fisher Dies at 98 | News | The Harvard Crimson". 1913-12-05. Retrieved 2012-05-04. 
  3. ^ a b c d e Fisher CM (November 2001). "A career in cerebrovascular disease: a personal account". Stroke 32 (11): 2719–24. doi:10.1161/hs1101.098765. PMID 11692045. 
  4. ^ Fisher CM (1956). "An unusual variant of acute idiopathic polyneuritis (syndrome of ophthalmolplegia, ataxia and areflexia)". N. Engl. J. Med. 255 (2): 57–65. doi:10.1056/NEJM195607122550201. PMID 13334797. 
  5. ^ Fisher CM (August 1965). "Lacunes: small, deep cerebral infarcts". Neurology 15: 774–84. doi:10.1212/wnl.15.8.774. PMID 14315302. 
  6. ^ Fisher CM, Curry HB (July 1965). "Pure motor hemiplegia of vascular origin". Arch. Neurol. 13: 30–44. doi:10.1001/archneur.1965.00470010034005. PMID 14314272. 
  7. ^ Fisher CM (January 1965). "Pure sensory stroke involving face, arm and leg". Neurology 15: 76–80. doi:10.1212/wnl.15.1.76. PMID 14257831. 
  8. ^ Fisher CM (December 1968). "The arterial lesions underlying lacunes". Acta Neuropathol. 12 (1): 1–15. doi:10.1007/BF00685305. PMID 5708546. 
  9. ^ Fisher CM (August 1982). "Lacunar strokes and infarcts: a review". Neurology 32 (8): 871–6. doi:10.1212/wnl.32.8.871. PMID 7048128. 
  10. ^ Fisher CM (1991). "Lacunar infarcts: a review". Cerebrovasc Dis 1 (6): 311–20. doi:10.1159/000108861. 

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