Friday, June 11, 2004

Have you ever had a parovarium inflammation?

No, you probably haven't. A lot of you don't even have a parovarium, and most of you have probably never heard about it.

Anyway, it's a common disease in Russia, or so they believe. Comes from cold, of course, like all the other diseases there. Also from sitting on a stone. It's called "vospalenie pridatkov" in Russian. "Vospalenie" is "inflammation". "Pridatki", as I found out today, is "parovarium".

When I was a little kid every time I was sitting on a stone some old ladies would come up to me and threaten me with the parovarium inflammation that would happen from sitting on a stone. I knew already what an inflammation was, and was fairly sure that it does not normally come from sitting on a stone. I did not know what a parovarium was; from their mysterious glances and constant referring to the fact that I was a girl I assumed they meant some sex organ, but which? They also referred to some vague terrible consequences, which in their language could mean either loss of fertility or loss of virginity. The former was no problem and the latter was quite an interesting proposition, except that I already knew that this, alas, also does not happen from sitting on stones, at least not unless you have company. i also assumed that at least some of the old women knew that too.

I continued ignorantly sitting on the stones until yesterday, when a friendly Russian finally gave me a link to a Russian medical dictionary that described exactly what kind of organ a pridatok is. It's parovarium in English, epoophoron in medical Latin (though sounds like a Greek loanword) and different Finnsh sources offer "lisämunasarja" or "munanjohtimen liepeessä sijaitseva mesonefroksen jäänne". If you still have no clue, Webster online offers "A group of tubules, a remnant of the Wolffian body, often found near the ovary or oviduct; the epoophoron." Other than that I have no clue, either.

A quick search on Google has revealed that nobody in either English-speaking or Finnish-speaking world has considered this horrible disease important enough to mention on the web. Come to think of it, I don't really know any Russians who'd had it either, An urban legend disease?

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