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Jacques FORESTIER, a visionary of the clinical epidemiology in rheumatology
  1. Maxime Dougados
  1. Correspondence to Professor Maxime Dougados, Department of Rheumatology, Hopital Cochin, Université Paris Descartes, Paris 75014, France; maxime.dougados{at}

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Starting my personal research work on spondyloarthritis in the 1980s, I was surprised that my mentor Bernard AMOR proposed me to read the book written in the 1950s by Jacques FORESTIER.1 In fact, I have been really impressed by the content of this book in terms of extreme detailed clinical data (eg, the description of the four different patterns of hip involvement: (a) arthritis a minima, (b) sclerotic pattern, (c) crenellated shape and (d) ankylosing pattern; the latter being probably in relation with periarticular enthesitis) and in terms of the quality of the provided statistics (prevalence and incidence of the different clinical presentations of spondyloarthritis).

Thanks to a specific book dedicated to the personal and professional life of Jacques FORESTIER written by Professor Jacques ARLET,2 I am now even more impressed by this ‘colleague’ (who was one of the first doctors opening an outpatient clinic dedicated to rheumatic patients in Cochin hospital) for several reasons:

This French doctor did not hesitate to cross the ocean in order to present his data in different departments in the …

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  • Handling editor Josef S Smolen

  • Funding The author has not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Not required.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.