A condition called "cello scrotum", which had been listed as a medical ailment since 1974, was revealed to be a hoax 34 years later, when Baroness Murphy confessed that she had invented it as a joke in a letter to the British Medical Journal.
Baroness Murphy and her husband John made up the supposed ailment in 1974 after reading about "guitarist's nipple", a condition caused by the edge of the instrument rubbing against the breast. The letter, which they were surprised was published in the May 11, 1974 edition of the British Medical Journal, was as follows:
SIR,-Though I have not come across "guitar nipple" as reported 'by Dr. P. Curtis (27 April, p. 226), I did once come across a case of "cello scrotum" caused by irritation from the body of the cello. The patient in question was a professional musician and played in rehearsal, practice, or concert for several hours each day. I am, etc., J. M. Murphy.