Dr. James Masterson of the Section of Radiology sought permission from the General Council to call their Registrar’s Prize Medal the “Sylvester Boland” medal in February 1990. Sylvester J. Boland was a very distinguished person in the field of radiology and the Academy President Professor John W. Dundee believed that anything we can do to encourage young people to take an interest in the Academy was a good thing. Council agreed to Dr. Masterson’s request.
Dr. SJ Boland published an historical paper in the Irish Journal of Medical Science-, Volume 12, Issue 2, pp 73–79
The search for biliary calculi and the study of the liver and biliary tract have attracted the attention of radiologists from the earliest days of radiology. Their efforts, however, were attended by little success. Stones were occasionally seen, but the difficulty of differentiating between biliary and renal calculi discouraged these workers, and up to 1910 the finding of a shadow in the gall-bladder region was regarded as of purely academic interest. A paper dealing with the matter of adhesions and their effects in the right upper abdominal quadrant when observed by means of the opaque meal, published in 1910 by Schürmaycr, drew attention to the value of the indirect signs of gall-bladder pathology and gave new life to its study. He was quickly followed by others working along these lines, and Cole, Pfahler, Knox, etc.–aided by improved technique, the discovery of the Potter-Bucky diaphragm, double-coated films and intensifying screens–added greatly to the results in x-ray examination in diseases of the gall bladder. In 1923 Röntgen-ray examination of the gall bladder by ordinary methods had reached a high degree of efficiency. Knowledge, however, was still very limited, and by these methods only chronic disease of the gall bladder or its results could be revealed.
Dr. SJ Boland also published a paper in the Irish Journal of Medical Science in 1942, on Pelviradiography: An Investigation of its Value
Radiographic examination of the female pelvis has been engaging the attention of many workers for the past twenty years. Several accurate and satisfactory methods of measuring the various diameters of the pelvis have been devised, those of Thomas, Roberts and Rowden being the best known; all are in general use. It has, however, always been recognised among obstetricians that reliance upon measurements alone as a means of forecasting the course of a particular labour was unreliable and that other factors entered into the problem. Even the most careful clinical examination has failed on occasion to reveal such factors and the obstetrician has sometimes been faced with an unexpectedly difficult delivery. In a series of communications published from 1932 onwards, Caldwell and his co-workers outlined the results of their investigations by pelvic radiography and the influence of those variations on the mechanism of labour; their work has thrown new light on the problem. They have grouped the various types on the basis of the shape of the inlet. Intermediate types are recognised, and it has been pointed out that a single unfavourable characteristic of one type is occasionally found in association with another type. They suggested that the pelvis should be studied as a whole in order to arrive at an accurate forecast of labour, and further that x-ray studies of the pelvis should be devoted to this end, and not to simple measurement of a few diameters as had been the practice up to that time. Their studies into the mechanism of labour observed in association with the various types of pelvis and their suggestions as to the best methods of dealing with them are also an entirely new concept.