Language is alive and constantly changing and evolving as our society changes. We use language to communicate and express ideas. The beauty of language is that it is abstract, and we can be creative and use it to say the same thing in many different ways, some more direct and others more picturesquely.
Ever since the first Lodox Statscan scanners were installed, the process of scanning a patient has become known as “lodoxing” a patient. At all the sites I have visited, clinicians and radiographers refer to the image thus produced as a “lodox”.
In a grammatical sense, the proprietary name of the company (Lodox Systems) is being used as a noun or a verb. Thus, the name Lodox has become synonymous with having a full-body X-ray image taken. This is known as a proprietary eponym or a genericised trademark, much in the same way as Hoover has come to mean vacuum cleaner, Xerox means to photocopy, Google means to search with a web search engine, and Zip-loc has come to mean any resealable plastic bag. Another – perhaps more general – grammatical term for the process of using one part of speech or word class as another is anthimeria or antimeria.
The South African national emergency medical care network ER24 recently posted a podcast of an interview with Christian di Zio, the Lodox Sales & Marketing Manager. The ER24 paramedics have been huge supporters of Lodox. They have a difficult task saving lives, and have been most positive about how the Lodox Statscan in a hospital’s trauma and resuscitation unit has made managing trauma patients more efficient, and how they “can’t imagine a major hospital in Johannesburg without a Lodox”.
The Lodox scanner also saves time during the initial assessment of the patient. Not only can a full-body scan be performed in just 13 seconds, but further time is saved “by not having to send the patient off to the X-ray department” for a series of images, and “the patient can be scanned while still on the backboard or scoop”.
One of the paramedics jokingly said that the term “to be lodoxed” should become an entry in the dictionary. Perhaps in future the term will be listed in the Oxford Dictionary. In the meantime, we pay tribute to the paramedics who put their lives on the line every day to save others. Thank you for your support. We are proud to be making a difference in our trauma hospitals.