Hand of an X-ray Technician at the Royal London Hospital in the 1900s KossyDerrickBlog KossyDerrickEnt


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Saturday, May 20, 2023

Hand of an X-ray Technician at the Royal London Hospital in the 1900s

Hand of an X-ray Technician at the Royal London Hospital in the 1900s. (Read More Here).

Physicist Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen unveiled one of the most significant breakthroughs in medical history with the discovery of X-rays. While experimenting with cathode light's ability to penetrate glass, Röntgen noticed an unexplained glow emanating from a nearby screen. Fascinated, he named this mysterious light "X-rays."

X-rays are electromagnetic waves similar to light, but with wavelengths 1,000 times shorter. Röntgen soon realized their remarkable ability to penetrate flesh while being absorbed by bones, leading to their immediate recognition as a medical marvel.

Although the usefulness of X-rays was swiftly recognized, the harmful effects of radiation were not initially understood. It was only later, as X-ray equipment operators began falling ill with conditions like cancer, that the dangers of radiation poisoning became apparent.

During the Balkan War, X-rays were first employed in battle to locate bullets and identify fractures. In recognition of his groundbreaking discovery, Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen was awarded the first Nobel Prize in Physics in 1901. Remarkably, he chose not to patent X-rays for personal gain and remained humble in the face of his monumental achievement.

The accompanying image portrays a severely damaged hand, resulting from the practice of testing X-ray machines by capturing an X-ray image of the technician's hand. At the time, the immense radiation exposure involved was not fully comprehended.

Exposure to certain levels of radiation can cause harm to the human body and prove fatal when the dosage is sufficiently high.

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