Charles E. Beevor's lasting contributions to neurology: More than just a sign

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Abstract

Charles Edward Beevor (1854–1908) was a prominent English neurologist who served in a variety of positions at the National Hospital for the Paralysed and Epileptic, Queen Square, from 1883 until his sudden death due to coronary artery disease in 1908. Staunchly committed to the meticulous study of neuroanatomy and physiology and education of his fellow physicians, Beevor was an accomplished clinician-scientist. He is most well known for describing the Beevor sign (commonly known as “Beevor's sign”), which is the upward movement of the umbilicus with truncal flexion from a supine position, used to indicate a spinal cord lesion between the levels of T10 and T12. His sign has also been reported to be suggestive of facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy. While the initial description of the Beevor sign has traditionally been attributed to his 1903 Croonian Lectures, he actually first described his sign in his 1898 textbook Diseases of the Nervous System: A Handbook for Students and Practitioners. In addition to his eponymous sign, Beevor also made significant contributions to the understanding of the representation of motor movements in the cerebral cortex, and, of more importance, utilized a novel method to identify cerebral vascular territory maps that are still utilized by neurologists today.

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