Florence and X-rays

  • Adrian Thomas
  • Francis Duck
Part of the Springer Biographies book series (SPRINGERBIOGS)


In 1902 when Florence entered radiology, the subject was still relatively new, having started following the discovery of X-rays by Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen in 1895. The medical applications of X-rays transformed many aspects of medical practice and also lead to developments in anatomical knowledge. Florence, assisted by her sister Edith, was instrumental in setting up the X-ray departments at both the Royal Free Hospital and the New Hospital for Women. Florence was forced to give up her appointment at the Royal Free Hospital due to professional reasons. Florence took an active part in professional life and made many contributions to the Association of Registered Medical Women. Florence made contributions to both diagnosis and therapy and in particular developed interests in the therapy of an overactive thyroid (Graves’ disease) and in gynaecological conditions. Just prior to the start of the Great War, Florence paid a visit to the United States to learn about developments in radiology and was able to bring back one of the new generation of X-ray tubes designed by William Coolidge, which was to be invaluable in her work in the Great War.


Röntgen Skiagram Royal Free Hospital Graves’ disease The Association of Registered Medical Women William Coolidge New Hospital for Women 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Adrian Thomas
    • 1
  • Francis Duck
    • 2
  1. 1.Faculty of Health and Wellbeing, School of Allied and Public Health ProfessionsCanterbury Christ Church UniversityCanterburyUK
  2. 2.Formerly University of BathBathUK

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